Mary Katherine Coleman

October 7, 1943 - March 16, 2020
Mary Katherine Coleman

Mary Katherine (Chesser) Coleman 76, widow of Dr. Dexter Caswell Coleman, passed away Monday Evening March 16, 2020 at Premier Living in Lake Waccamaw NC.

Born in Wilmington on October 7, 1943, the daughter of the late Homer Edger Chesser, Sr. and Katherine Bethea Chesser. Her niece Heather Shaw also preceded her in death.

Mary Katherine was born and raised in Wilmington, NC and graduated from New Hanover High School. She was a member of Fifth Avenue Methodist Church in Wilmington and Warsaw United Methodist Church in Warsaw, NC. Mary Katherine was a devoted wife to Dexter for 43 years. She supported his dream of becoming a dentist. They moved to Chapel Hill in 1988, so he could attend UNC-Chapel Hill School of Dentistry. When Dexter graduated they chose to make their home in Warsaw, NC, where he joined Dr. Bill Stopplebien in growing a private practice until his death in 2008 . Once settled, Mary Katherine joined the Warsaw Garden Club. Her love of gardening then lead her to join the North Carolina Garden Club. As a member, she worked on projects such as the Martha Franck Sensory Garden at the Govern Morehead School for the Blind and the NCDOT Wildflower Program for the state’s highways. Mary Katherine also loved traveling. She traveled frequently with a group of friends from Southeastern Community College. Her travel adventures took her to many different countries, including Greece, China, Israel, and Ireland.

Surviving is her daughter Angela McClain (Robbie) of Piedmont, SC; son Charles Coleman (Frankie) of Lake Waccamaw, NC; brother Homer Chesser, Jr (Donna) of Wilmington, NC; sister Jean Chesser Service (Grant) of Durham, NC; and brother-n-law Kenneth Coleman (Catherine) of Roseboro, NC. Her grandchilren are Monica Blanton, Coleman Fresquez, Gabriella Fresquez, and Ella Coleman. She also has two great grandchildren Jesse and Arya Blanton. Her nieces and nephews are Betsy Knox; Spencer, Alex and Katie Service; Lee Coleman; and Katie Coleman Polglaze.

A celebration of life will be planned at a future date.

In lieu of flowers, the family request memorial donations be given to the Alzheimer’s Association ( or the North Carolina Garden Club (

Please share memories and condolences with the family by clicking on the “Post a Condolence” tab below.

Wilmington Funeral & Cremation, 1535 S.41st Street Wilmington, NC 28403. 910.791.9099.

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  • March 18, 2020
    Sally Mauney says:
    Mary Coleman will always be a favorite of our visits to serve communion at Morningside. Kind and cheerful, loving and gracious, Mary was sustained by her Catholic faith and genuine love of others. We will.miss her always, but know her life is now complete and she is with her Lord.

  • March 19, 2020
    Kelly Blanton Landen Blanton and Dillon Blanton says:
    My greatest sympathy to your family for your loss. I have some fond memories of Mary Catherine she was a gracious southern lady !