Shirley Coogan Winn

Published 12:00 am Sunday, February 15, 2015

HOUSTON — Funeral services for Shirley Coogan Winn, 91, of Houston, who died Feb. 10, 2015, will be at 1 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 21, at St. Michael’s Catholic Church.

Visitation will be at 7 p.m. Friday, Feb. 20, at the Brookdale Galleria.

Winn

Winn

Winn was born on Feb. 15, 1923, in New Orleans, the daughter of Fred and Hazel Coogan.

She enjoyed her early years amidst a large extended family and loved sharing a home with her maternal grandmother on Canal Street. When her parents moved to Mobile, she grew through her grade school years with friends and fond memories of weekends on Mobile Bay. Graduating from Murphy High School with Southern festivity, she went to the University of Alabama, where again she made many friends in her sorority Alpha Gamma Delta. She flourished as a drama major acting in varied plays from Shakespeare to popular comedies and mysteries. Her love for drama extended through her life as she acted and directed in Community Theater, marveled friends and family with her gift for storytelling. And as a young graduate, had her own radio program on WNOE in New Orleans.

She met her husband, Harlan Harbour Winn, Jr., in college, and they were married in Long Beach before he went overseas in the Marine Corps. After the war, they lived in New Orleans and began a family. They had three sons: Harbour, Paris and Ashley. In 1950, they moved to Houston where Shirley celebrated the rest of her life with many friends, book discussion series, attendance at countless plays and endless bridge games. She taught English at Deady Middle School for more than 20 years and also the University of Houston, where she earned a Master’s degree in English. Never seeming to accept the limits of time, she obtained licenses to sell real estate, insurance and mutual funds. She was a longtime member and volunteer with the Charity Guild of Catholic Women and last year was recognized for her 25 years of service. She also served as President of the Houston Association of Retired Teachers in 1992-1993.

As a widow, she married Richard Bannerot in 1981, and they traveled the world to virtually all the continents — always returning with many stories, artifact replicas and slides to share. Even with these many happy travels together, they also made time to open their home to an uncle and eventually Shirley’s mother, Hazel, to care for them as each aged.

A marvelous cook, Shirley loved to entertain with both large and small dinner parties. Her family seemed her greatest joy, for she yearned for them to visit and fill her home with laughter and excitement over the Christmas holidays and other times in the year. To her five grandchildren and five great-grandchildren, she was Mimi, an energetic, lively character who seemed ageless as she sang and frolicked with them in playful delight. She also took that sense of fun and many jokes to her sons’ homes, making sets of friends where all three lived. When diagnosed with kidney cancer early last year and told her time was limited, she chose all the options possible to extend life. Beginning last June, she began her own odyssey to visit friends in the two cities of her youth, New Orleans and Mobile, and to spend time in the homes of her sons and grandchildren. This travel took her to the Santa Cruz area as well as east and south of San Francisco in the Bay Area. She then went on to Denver, Oklahoma City and Dallas before returning to Houston in late July.

Survivors include her sons, Harbour Winn of Oklahoma City and wife, Mickey, Paris Winn of Dallas and partner, Beau Bumgardner; and Ashley Winn of Selva Beach, Ca. and wife, Jane Grady; second husband’s sons, Richard Bannerot of Houston and Jim Bannerot of Austin; grandchildren, Michelle Baptiste and husband, Olison and Cristin Winn Reyes and husband, Chris, and Shawn Winn and wife, Alison, and Grady and Rory Winn; great-grandchildren, Sienna and Savanna Baptiste, Gavin, Harbour, and Braelyn Winn; sister-in-law, Norma Coogan of Houston; nephew, Fred Coogan and wife, Sabine Bildstein; and nieces, Cathleen Coogan and Sr. Sheila Coogan and daughter, Katie.

Her family is filled with gratitude for her many friends and their countless acts of kindness, the skilled caring service from all at Houston Hospice, as well as Sharon Reed and the caregivers from At Your Side Home Care.

Memorial may be made to the Charity Guild of Catholic Women, Strake Jesuit College Preparatory or Houston Hospice.