A memorial service is scheduled for Saturday, April 1, 2017 10:00am, at The First Presbyterian Church of San Luis Obispo, with a reception to follow. All are welcome to attend and celebrate Connie's life.
Address: 981 Marsh St, San Luis Obispo, CA 93401, USA
Phone: +1 805-543-5451
Connie Jean Cochran was born Nov 23rd, 1924, in Twin Falls County, Idaho. The only child of John and Mabel Cochran, Connie was bright and friendly, and a wonderful student. She had a keen interest in music and performed piano recitals and concerts locally. Connie studied at and graduated from the College of the Pacific (now University of the Pacific) in 1946, though her ambitious love of music prompted her to take a year in between to study music in Chicago. She was active in her music sorority and in the local chapter of AAUW.
Connie married Jayson(Jack R.) McBade shortly after graduation and they lived together in Southern California, where Connie worked as a music teacher. She and Jayson celebrated the births of Michael McBade (1948) and John McBade (1952). Later, Connie moved to San Luis Obispo, where she taught elementary school in Los Osos, CA. Although she elected to take an early retirement, she continued to substitute-teach for a number of years after.
Music continued to be a profound part of Connie’s life. As her good friend Barbara Wayland said; “Connie was a fabulous musician and could sight-read anything.” Connie was a passionate alto singer with the San Luis Obispo Vocal Arts Ensemble, also managing ticket sales for them for close to 20 years. She also served on the Board of Canzone women’s ensemble. In addition to singing she was always prepared to help with piano accompaniments. SLOVAE even had a couple of concerts where she and the accompanist played 4-hand.
Connie met her (Late) beloved husband Francis Drake at a friend’s birthday party and they married on June 24th, 2000 at the First Presbyterian Church in San Luis Obispo. Frank and Connie were married almost 17 years until Frank’s passing on January 21st, 2017.
Connie was a great storyteller, and she had an amazing memory for people. Connie also loved to travel. One of her fondest journeys was her 1988 Vocal Arts European tour in which she stayed an extra two weeks with a friend just to explore England.
She enjoyed seeing the latest movies, going to plays at PCPA, and checking out new restaurants. She and Frank both loved to play bridge, and in recent years, Connie also began playing online. She really enjoyed getting to know players from all over the world.
Most of all, Connie was a good and loyal friend. She was always ready with a good joke when you needed a laugh, and always ready to listen if you were having a difficult time. The large attendance at her 90th birthday party showed how highly she was regarded. Connie absolutely loved and cherished her family. She never missed a grandchild’s birthday party, and faithfully sent cards and phone calls for every occasion on the calendar. In later years Connie learned to make greeting cards, and got very good at it. She really enjoyed craft afternoons with fellow card-makers, and her friends and family loved receiving the cards. She encouraged her children and grandchildren to follow their dreams and helped them in every way she could. She never missed a moment to stop and smell the flowers, or ‘lallows’ as her granddaughter once called them, and was always ready with a hug and an encouraging word. Connie is survived by her two sons: Michael McBade (Dolores), John McBade (Belinda), three grandchildren: Christin Slyngman (Travis), Alison McBade, and Stephen(Heather) McBade, and three great-grandchildren: Amelia Stephens, and Bethany and Hayley Slyngman. The family is greatly blessed by the outpouring of support from Connie’s many friends, and wishes to offer their sincerest gratitude.