Haywood Funeral Home
2415 S Wilmington St.
| Raleigh, NC 27603
Tel: 1-919-832-2835


Denise Louise Coates

January 30, 1961 ~ January 10, 2019 (age 57)
Obituary Image

Mrs. Denise "Neesie" Coates, 57, of Apex, North Carolina departed this earthly life on Thursday, January 10, 2019. 

Enchanting, devoted, and loving are just a few words to describe Denise “Nessie” Coates.

Born January 30, 1961 in Wake County, to the late Leroy Harrington and Curlie Ann Lassiter, Neesie recognized early that she wanted to live a life of  purpose. With her ambition as a backdrop, she participated in many school activities and became the first African-American female on Cary High School Women's Volleyball team.

Her innate ability to help others often meant she was always available and ready to serve. She carried the spirit of servitude with her in various roles and positions, from healthcare to barbering to military representative. Neesie spent many years as a liaison for military posts in South Carolina, Hawaii, Germany and Virginia. She also worked directly with military officials and their spouses, creating a community initiative to improve military base lifestyle. During her stint at Fort Lee, she began a mentorship with Major General Gwen Bingham to study logistics in Housing and Development for military bases. Under Major General Bingham’s leadership, Denise began work towards a project lead position, however her declining health forced her to put her career to the side.

Known for her ease in frequent conversation, with even total strangers, Nessie possessed a contagious smile and captivating glow that won the trust and hearts of many. Her gift of joy, shown through her infectious laugh and smile, she convinced everyone she came in contact with they were the first in her heart. She also experienced her share of tragedy, losing her parents, grandparents (Mae Norris and Bernice Lassiter) , and son (Douglas “DJ” Mangum). Through it all, her love for her family and her faith gave her the strength to not only to go on, but to live a life dedicated to sentiment and graciousness. Neesie dedicated her life to Jehovah by baptism on January 25, 2015. She loved Jehovah until the end of her life on January 10, 2019.

As a devoted mother, wife, Witness, and friend, Neesie did everything beautifully. She knew it was important to let everyone know how special they were to her, so her hands always created what her heart felt. She had an extraordinary green thumb and held the title of “Yard of the Year” on several military bases. Naturally beautiful, Neesie never missed a hair or nail appointment and loved scented candles, dogs, dancing, HGTV and The Food Network. She enjoyed traveling, dining on exotic cuisines and celebrating different cultures, even more so with her children. In 2018, she launched a wreath design business, Denise’s Creations and experienced growing success until her health diminished.  

Neesie’s love for helping others could not compare to her greatest joy - her family.  She leaves precious memories to her husband, Mr. Daniel Coates of the home; her children, Mr. Demetrius Harrington of Texas, Ms. Nekeyeta Newkirk and Mr.Michael Mangum of North Carolina, Mr. Hakeem Mangum of Colorado and Mr. Sharrod Mangum of Texas; two grandchildren, Sam and Zamari; her best friend, Ms. Rita Barner of Virginia; a cherished aunt, Ms. Cora Adams of North Carolina; her beloved pet, Princess of the home; and a host of cousins, friends, and adopted sons, brothers and sisters in the Kingdom Hall.

The family graciously acknowledges the many acts of kindness shown during this time and wish to extend a special thanks to the nurses, doctors and staff who have compassionately cared for our loved one.





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