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Marion Bowman Coleman

September 28, 1918 May 17, 2020
Marion Bowman Coleman
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Obituary for Marion Bowman Coleman
Marion Bowman Coleman, a longtime resident of Rhode Island and Florida, who was once one of the best amateur golfers in the state, passed away on May 17 as a result of Covid 19. She was 101 years old and living in a Providence nursing home at the time of her death.
The mother of Providence Journal sports writer Bill Reynolds, who once wrote about her positive spirit and competitive drive in a popular Mother’s Day column, Marion enjoyed her life no matter what the circumstances.
As recently as two weeks ago, just before testing positive for the coronavirus, she described her life as “perfect” and was still saying “Howdy Doody” to family and friends.
Born in Massachusetts, she grew up in Falmouth on the Cape, where she made headlines as a high school basketball star in the early 1930’s. She was captain of her team, and was one of the leading scorers on the Cape. After high school, she attended Bryant College, which was then on the East Side of Providence, where she continued to play basketball and hoped for a career as a gym teacher.
As an adult, she fell in love with golf and pursued it seriously, even while raising three children in Barrington. She quickly became one of the best female players in Rhode Island, who won numerous club championships. Her passion for the game never left her; she played into her 90’s, even getting a hole in one at age 91.
She is survived by her three children from her first marriage; Bill Reynolds of Pawtucket, Polly Reynolds of North Providence and Geoffrey Reynolds of Denmark; and two grandchildren, Jackson Connell and Amy Lee Connell. Her second marriage was to Bill Coleman of Barrington and Providence, who predeceased her. As a couple, they often summered in Watch Hill and spent winters in Gulf Stream, Florida.
Her only sibling, a younger sister Ruthie, passed away on the Cape a few years ago.
Burial will be private. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Rhode Island Community Food Bank or the Rhode Island Foundation’s Covid-19 Relief Fund.
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