Cover photo for Caleb Joel Cotterman's Obituary
Caleb Joel Cotterman Profile Photo
1989 CJ 2023

Caleb Joel Cotterman

May 28, 1989 — August 16, 2023

Charlotte

Caleb Cotterman, 34, passed away on August 16, 2023, in Charlotte, NC after a courageous 4.5-year battle with cancer. 

Caleb Cotterman who was known by C.J. to many of his friends and family, was born on May 28, 1989 in Piqua, OH, to Ralph Cotterman, III and Kimberly Cotterman.

Caleb spent most of his childhood years in Frederick, MD and graduated from Walkersville Highschool in 2008. At the age of 15, Caleb was diagnosed with Ewings Sarcoma and became an inspiration to many for his strength and determination to defeat the disease. Equipped with a new appreciation for life, C.J. went on to live to the fullest extent possible. He resiliently returned to the sport of wrestling and in 2008 was inducted into the National Wrestling Hall of Fame for his lifetime service to the sport. 

In 2013, Caleb graduated from East Carolina University with a Bachelor's degree in Criminal Justice; despite his dedication to nightlife and libations with his closest friends whom later became like family. After graduation, CJ began his professional career in industrial inspections, a unique industry which allows nuclear energy facilities to maintain safety standards. 

Caleb married the love of his life Gabbrielle Webb in Gatlinburg, TN on October 8, 2022 surrounded by their closest friends and family. In the months following, as his health began to decline, he spoke so fondly of this perfect day. The love held between this young couple could only be described as remarkable. Gabbrielle was the epitome of advocacy and support during the long arduous fight with his disease. Caleb knew a type of love that few will have the privilege of experiencing in this life time. 

Caleb was known for his positivity, resiliency, and will to live. He was also known for being unbelievably stubborn, opinionated, and eager to "google" whenever he did not believe what was being told to him. It was this tenacity that allowed him to fight such a long arduous battle with the Osteosarcoma diagnosis he received in 2019. Caleb knew the importance of being intentional with his time and filled his days with friends, family, and his wife whenever possible. In his last days, rather than praying for himself, he chose to pray for the future of those closest to him. In the words of his close friend, "Cancer took away CJs physical abilities but it did not touch his MIND, it did not touch his HEART, and it did not touch his SOUL and those three things will live on FOREVER!"

Caleb is survived by Gabbrielle Webb - spouse, Ralph Cotterman III- father, Kimberly Cotterman- mother, Carah Cotterman- sister, Chad Cotterman-brother, Ashlen Cotterman- sister in law, Faith Cotterman-niece, Silas Cotterman- nephew, Donald Yancy- grandfather, and Ralph Cotterman II- grandfather. As well as, Luca Cotterman (first born fur child), and Kairo Cotterman (second born fur child). Along with countless other friends and family who loved him fiercely. 

He is reunited with his grandmothers Evelyn Yancy and Floree Cotterman. Along with his previous fur babies Jasmine and Roxy. 

In honor of CJ, his family wishes for you to follow your passions, always look for the next solution, and hold your loved ones a little closer. 

They say the greater the love the greater the grief. With that in mind, we ask that you continue to keep Caleb's family and friends in your prayers for the weeks and months to come. 

Caleb's family would also like to take the time to thank his team of doctors at the Cleveland clinic who remained open minded, persistent, and aggressive in his treatments and gave CJ the tools to fight for as long as he did. We would also like to thank his nurses who became friends and worked selflessly to protect his dignity during his hardest times. In a touching conversation following his death, his team stated, "The strength, courage and determination to do anything possible (which to anyone else would have been completely impossible) is nothing I've ever experienced in my almost 20 years in this field". 

We appreciate your continued patience as we accommodate Caleb's end of life wishes. In the days preceding his death, his family located an email in which Caleb laid out specific and outlandish requests. In true Caleb fashion he has requested to be cremated, scattered in the Atlantic Ocean with the Wrightsville Beach shoreline in site. Specifically, we've been asked to use a fish finder to locate aquatic life. He also requested a celebration of life "party" in Wrightsville Beach, NC. Furthermore, he has asked we set a Viking style boat on fire using a single flaming arrow. We've been instructed to "get creative". We know that Caleb is smirking at us from above as we attempt to bring his vision to life. 

Please join us for Caleb's Celebration of Life on Sunday, September 3, 2023 from 4:00 - 8:00 P.M. at Shell Island Resort, 2700 North Lumina Avenue, Wrightsville Beach, NC 28480. CJ would want you to be comfortable! But feel free to wear the color orange which was his favorite.

In lieu of flowers, the family has requested donations be sent to MIB Agents (https://www.mibagents.org/) for the purpose of aiding in Osteosarcoma Cancer Research.

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Caleb Joel Cotterman, please visit our flower store.

Service Schedule

Past Services

Celebration of Life

Sunday, September 3, 2023

4:00 - 8:00 pm (Eastern time)

CJ would want you to be comfortable! But feel free to wear the color orange which was his favorite.

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