Oklahoma Baptist Homes for Children

 

1993 to 2002

Greg Coats

Greg CoatsGreg’s life has not always had the structure of a Marine. He grew up in Purcell, with a father who traveled for business, a Christian mother, and two younger sisters. In the fifth grade, several of Greg’s friends invited him to Vacation Bible School at the First Baptist Church. He loved it. Then he begged to go to church camp at Falls Creek. It was there that Greg asked Jesus to save him. God began a work in Greg’s life that continues today, even though Greg hasn’t always cooperated.

A couple of years later, Greg began running with an older crowd. He let anger control his actions, began drinking, and got into trouble at school. His life was headed in the wrong direction, until Greg’s dad took him to Boys Ranch Town.

Greg adapted quickly to the structure and consistent discipline at the Ranch. He immediately bonded with the staff and developed interest in the horse program. His houseparents loved him as he was, took time to get to know him, and taught him how to work through his problems.

At the end of his seventh grade year, Greg returned home and put into practice what he’d learned at the Ranch. He set a schedule for himself, accepted responsibility for his sisters, and took any job he could find. He used his money to buy school supplies and clothes for himself and his sisters.

Over time, he was miserable and longing for direction. Greg was welcomed back at Boys Ranch Town.

“I needed the accountability of an entire staff of Christian adults believing in me, hoping the best for me. I needed the discipline. I knew the staff loved me. I also knew I’d been given every chance and if I messed my life up, it would be my own fault,” Greg said.

December 22, 2001, Greg married April Michelle Puckett of Edmond. In the days following September 11th, the government asked all soldiers to put their affairs in order and gave each one a $250,000 life insurance policy. Generously, Greg and April decided to designate Boys Ranch Town as a beneficiary.

Greg still remembers everyone at Boys Ranch Town who helped change his life.

“I can’t let them down,” Greg says. “Lately, people have been calling all of us in the military heroes. But the people who make Boys Ranch Town possible, those are my heroes. God used them to change my life forever.”


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