Eleven-year-old Emily Anne "Em-Silly" Coppinger passed away on Thursday, May 16, 2013, at her home in Bayfield, Colo., of natural causes related to her disability. Emily was born in Baltimore, Md., on Aug. 31, 2001, to Kirk and Susan Coppinger. Emily moved to Southwest Colorado with her family in 2006 as part of a relocation related to her father's employment.
Emily was a special-needs student in the center based program at Riverview Elementary School and was in the fifth grade. She also attended elementary school in Bayfield on Fridays and made many friends there. She visited Escalante Middle School on Tuesday, May 14, in preparation for moving up to middle school.
Emily was a "Disney Tea Cups spinning," "roller coaster" kid who loved being on the go.
She loved climbing up into a new person's lap and getting them to clap for her. Emily was a light in a dark room; she always brought a special spirit to a room that always made people happy. Emily loved skiing, the faster, the steeper and more snow she got in her face, the more she liked it. Emily loved bright lights, loud noises and speed. Although Emily could not talk, her family always knew what she wanted.
She was a strong-willed kid who simply loved everyone.
She loved skiing and rafting with Adaptive Sports and swimming at Fort Lewis.
Emily also enjoyed music. She loved to listen to her mom sing and play the guitar (while screaming like the Beatles were just getting off a certain airplane) and participated in the music programs at both Riverview and Bayfield Elementary school. Emily's special talent was bringing out the good in everyone she met; it was truly a privilege to know and raise Emily.
Emily is survived by her parents, Kirk and Susan Coppinger, her twin sister, Olivia, and older brother, Michael, all of Bayfield. She is also survived by her grandparents, Del and Pam Coppinger of Mancos, and Maurice and Judy Humphrey of Richmond, Vt., as well as numerous aunts, uncles, and cousins.
A memorial service will be held for Emily at the LDS chapel in Bayfield on Thursday, May 23, 2013, at 1 p.m.. Please bring your children who may have known Emily; this will be a child-friendly memorial service.
Emily was a participant with Adaptive Sports (ASA) in Durango, Colo. It provided many opportunities (on a full scholarship) for her to get outside and participate in skiing and rafting that would generally have been considered inaccessible for a person with her disabilities. Therefore, the family suggests memorial contributions to Adaptive Sports Association in Durango, The web address is www.asadurango.com and the physical address is P.O. Box 1884, Durango, CO 81302; the phone number is (970) 259-0374.