ST. PETERSBURG, FL -- John Cote of St. Petersburg, FL, died peacefully in his home on March 21, 2013. He had just reached his special personal goal of living to be 100 years old a month ago. Family and friends from all over came to help him celebrate this occasion with a special gathering in his honor.
John was born in Drummond, New Brunswick, Canada, on Feb. 19, 1913, to Eugene and Alphonsine Cote. He was one of 10 children; only five survived through early childhood. He was raised and went to school in Van Buren, where he only made it through the fourth-grade.
After fourth grade, he left school to help his mother with cooking for many people, and thus, a chef was born.
He enlisted in the Army in April 1940, before Pearl Harbor and the United States joined World War II. There he pursued his future career as a cook. John was stationed in North Africa and the Persian Gulf with the 69th regiment during the War.
He traveled and cooked for Gen. George Patton and his troops as they chased Rommel through Africa. He once prepared a meal for General Patton that so impressed the officer, that the General gave him a non-commissioned battlefield promotion, a field order upgrade from corporal to sergeant.
When John returned from the war, he married Yvette Couture of Lewiston, in September 1945.
He is survived by his brother, Roland Cote of Mexico; nieces, Linda and husband, Dick of Waldoboro, Debbie Lamkin and husband, Dow of Gray and Elaine Palmer and husband, Noel of Rumford; godchild and niece, Teresa Whitney of Rochester, NY; nephew, Real Matthieu of St. Petersburg; and many other Cotes, Bourgoins and Coutures.