Matthew C. Coote

March 17, 1989 - July 10, 2020

Matthew Carter Coote, 31, of La Grande, passed away on July 10, 2020. It is anticipated that a celebration of life service will be held April 10, 2021, at 4 p.m. at the Becker Family Sale Barn at the Eastern Oregon Livestock Show Grounds in Union, Oregon, to allow Matthew’s friends and family to all share memories and celebrate his life.

Matthew was born on March 17, 1989, in La Grande, Oregon. A native of the Grande Ronde Valley, Matthew lived all of his short but full life in the same home. From the day he was brought home from the hospital by his parents, John Edward Coote and Anne C. (Verbout) Coote, he was blessed to be raised in a place he truly loved. Whether it was pursuing his passion of farming or playing in the hills and streams that bountifully surrounded us, Matthew loved the Eastern Oregon way of life.

All who knew Matthew at any stage of his life were met with a kind-hearted gentle soul. Even as a youngster at Island City Elementary, Matthew was always considerate of and a good friend to others. As a youth he participated in all types of sports. Matthew enjoyed the camaraderie sports provided. He cherished his friendships.

His early years found him developing a love for animals. In addition to owning many different pets throughout his life, Matthew enjoyed raising sheep and registered Angus cattle. He excelled in preparing his animals for 4-H competitions at the Eastern Oregon Livestock Show and Union County Fair, as well as oher junior show competitions. Whether it was friends or animals, Matthew always put the needs of others ahead of himself. He was a loyal and loving young man.

Matthew embraced his new blended family at the age of 11 when his father married his second mother, Joni Lequerica. Matthew felt blessed to have two new siblings, Cale and Cali Wetstein. Matthew relished the opportunities to share life with new friends. He was reared in love by all of his family.

After graduating from La Grande High School in 2007, Matthew worked the land he loved, making hay and planting crops. He started with Tony Hamann at a young age and worked most of his adult life at Hamann Farms. His passion to farm embodied many of the things that brought him joy. He loved the outdoors and the satisfaction of nurturing the growth of crops. He was skilled at welding and had a good working knowledge of mechanics. He could fix anything at any time.

When work gave way for a moment to play, Matthew could be found enjoying another passion his father had introduced him to in fishing. He became skilled at fly fishing with encouragement from his mother. Along with friends and his dogs Murphy or Boss by his side, he would hit the rivers, streams and lakes that are abundant in our area. He enjoyed cooking, particularly ribs, brisket and anything that required grilling and smoking.

Matthew’s good nature was always fun to be around or with. Matthew will be remembered as always smiling. He always put others at ease with his caring and compassionate nature. At every stage of life he demonstrated an innate ability to connect with others and be a friend.

Matthew is survived by his parents: father John Edward Coote and step-mother Joni Lequerica of La Grande; mother Anne (Verbout) Coote of La Grande; step-siblings Cale Wetstein of Orlando, Florida, and Cali Wetstein of Vancouver, Washington; grandmother, Marilyn Friedrich of Portland, Oregon; and several aunts, uncles and cousins. He was preceded in death by his three grandparents, Edward and Francis Coote and Alphonso Verbout.

The Coote family would welcome and appreciate any memories or re-telling of Matthew’s stories. Those may be posted online at

Additionally, the family is pursuing the establishment of a memorial scholarship fund through the Union 4-H Association. In lieu of flowers, tax deductible memorial donations may be made to Union County 4-H Association, Memo: Matthew Coote Memorial, 10507 N. McAlister., La Grande 97850.

Online condolences may be made to the family at

Sign A Guestbook

Offer a personal message of sympathy...

By sharing a fond memory or writing a kind tribute, you will be providing a comforting keepsake to those in mourning. If you have an existing account with this site, you may log in with that below. Otherwise, you can create an account by clicking on the Log in button below, and then register to create your account.

(0) entries

Sign the guestbook.

Keep it Clean. Please avoid obscene, vulgar, lewd, racist or sexually-oriented language.
Don't Threaten. Threats of harming another person will not be tolerated.
Be Truthful. Don't knowingly lie about anyone or anything.
Be Nice. No racism, sexism or any sort of -ism that is degrading to another person.
Be Proactive. Use the 'Report' link on each comment to let us know of abusive posts.
Share with Us. We'd love to hear eyewitness accounts, the history behind an article.