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Francis Coughlin, 86; Former Stamford Hospital Surgery Chief

Calling hours will be held Monday, Feb. 24 with the funeral scheduled for Tuesday, Feb. 25.


Dr. Francis R. Coughlin Jr., a thoracic surgeon and lawyer, passed away Feb. 21. He was 86.

He was a veteran of World War II having served in the Merchant Marines. 

He graduated from Fordham College and Yale Medical School and was welcomed to Stamford as the first thoracic surgeon. He interned at McGill Med School in Montreal, Canada and was a resident at the Overhold Clinic in Brookline, MA.

As a pioneer in thoracic surgery, he practiced cardio-vascular surgery in Stamford for 28 years and was Chief of Surgery for both Stamford Hospital and St. Joseph Medical Center, as well as Chief of Medical Staff of St. Joseph Medical Center and on the Board of Directors.

He was the President of the Tuberculosis and Health Association in Stamford, President of Red Cross in New Canaan, member of the Ethics Committee at Stamford Hospital and a member of Stamford VNA for many years. He raised his family in Shippan for many years and was a member of the Stamford Yacht Club. 

When he was 58 years old, he began law school and received his degree from Quinnipiac College School of Law when he was 62 and earned his JD, practicing as a legal medical consultant. Even as an attorney, Frank kept his love for medicine and was always helping his co-workers and friends with any medical problems. He loved living in New Canaan in later years and was very active in town and community affairs. He was also Chair of the Yale Medical School Alumnae Association in recent years.

He loved healing people, reading, was a lifelong learner and always happy to pass his wealth of knowledge along to others. He had too many degrees and awards to count. Besides his family and many friends, he also loved music, art, travel, and antiques – especially antique clocks and travel. He took great interest in events of a local, national and global nature and was a member of DOCA for many years. 

Dr. Coughlin is survived by his wife of 62 years, Barbara Blunt Coughlin; his children Hilary Loftus, Mary Jackson, Patty Papale, Christopher Coughlin, Geoffrey Coughlin; Daniel Coughlin, Belle Coughlin and David Coughlin and 12 grandchildren. 

The family will receive friends from 4 to 8 p.m. Monday, Feb. 24 at the Hoyt Funeral Home, 199 Main St., New Canaan. A Mass of Christian Burial will be held at 10 a.m. Tuesday at St. Matthew's Church, Scribner Avenue, Norwalk.

In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made in his name to Stamford Hospital, 30 Shelburne Rd. Stamford, CT 06904 or Sisters of St. Joseph at 27 Park Street, West Hartford, CT. 

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