Robert “Bob” Cote, of Old Orchard Beach, Maine, passed away on July 30, 2019 with his children by his side. He was born on September 27, 1930 in Biddeford, Maine, son of Roland and Lena (Metayer) Cote.
Beloved in the twin cities of Biddeford and Saco and highly respected throughout the state of Maine for his calm demeanor and patience, whether coaching on the ballfield or teaching in the classroom, Bob always fostered confidence and loyalty among students and players.
Bob graduated from St. Louis High School in 1949 as class president and valedictorian. A three sport star, and an All-State football fullback, All Telegram League Baseball (pitched a no-hitter vs. Biddeford), All Conference scoring champ in basketball; the combination of grades and athletic achievement lead to a full football scholarship at Boston College. Bob continued to star as a linebacker at Boston College. He earned the B.C. Varsity Club’s award as the team’s outstanding scholar athlete and graduated in 1953 making the All New England Team and the All East Team as captain.
An assistant football coach in his year of graduate study at B.C., he returned to St. Louis as basketball, baseball, and football coach. His basketball teams were the first St. Louis teams to qualify for tournament play a total of five times. His 1956 baseball team won the school’s only Telegram League Championship.
Bob’s storied run as St. Louis head football coach began in 1957 and continued until the school closed in 1970. While at St. Louis his overall record was 92-24-3 with five State Championships.
With the closing of St. Louis in June 1970, Bob crossed the Saco River to his old rival Thornton Academy with continued success. His Golden Trojans reached the Class A playoffs five times and reached three semifinal and were division champs and state runners-up in 1974. His TA record in 16 seasons was 81-50-5. Bob retired from coaching in 1984 and from teaching in 1992. In his retirement speech, Bob knew early on the titles he always wanted to be called; husband, father, teacher, and coach. He later added the title “pepere”.
In 1990 the Maine Chapter of the National Football Foundation and hall of Fame bestowed its 1990 contributor to Amateur Football Award to Cote. In 1999 he was inducted into the Maine Sports Hall of Fame. In 2013 he was inducted into the 2013 first annual Biddeford High School Hall of Honor and The Thornton Academy Athletic Hall of Fame.
In 1953 Bob married Rita Guilbeault and together they raised six children until Rita’s passing in 1999. In 2001 Bob married Madeleine Rousselle. He was preceded in death by his wife Madeleine in 2013, his parents; grandson, Jack Cote in 1997; brother Leonard Cote in 1959; and his daughter Anne M. Cadorette of Lyman.
Bob is survived by his sons, Michael “Mickey” Cote, his significant other, Theresa Lavigne, of Biddeford; John L. Cote, of Saco; Donald J. and his wife, C. J. (Dubois) Cote of Biddeford; Charles “Chuck” E. and his wife Lisa Cote of Biddeford; daughter Mary E. Gendron and her husband Roland of Waterboro; son- in-law Michael Cadorette of Lyman; step daughter, Anne Marie Smith, and her husband Nelson, of South Thomaston; step son, John Rousselle, of Gray; grandchildren, Joseph Cote, Meaghan Cote, Jenna (Cote) Hiera, Kaitlyn (Cote) Cadorette, Holly (Cadorette) Carle, Sarah Cadorette, Christine (Cote) Saunders, Eric Gendron, Jason Gendron, Bobby Cote, and Matthew Cote, step-grandchildren, Jack and Christine Rousselle.
Visiting Hours will 3:00 to 7:00 p.m. on August 2, 2019 at Hope Memorial Chapel, 480 Elm Street, Biddeford, ME 04005. A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated at 10:00 a.m. on August 3, 2019 at St. Joseph Church in Biddeford. Burial will be in St. Joseph Cemetery in Biddeford. In lieu of flowers, Memorial donations may be made in his name to St. Louis Alumni Association, P.O. Box 493, Biddeford, ME, 04005 for Scholarships. To share condolences online, please visit www.HopeMemorial.com.
Donations may be made to:
St. Louis Alumni Scholarship Fund
P.O. Box 493, Biddeford ME 04005