MICHAEL “Coco” POLAKOVS, 86, of Catlettsburg, Ky., husband of Hazel Fannin Polakovs, died Sunday in Kings Daughters Medical Center. He was a professional circus clown, “Coco” notably with Ringling Brothers. Funeral service 1 p.m. Friday, Neal Funeral Home, Catlettsburg; burial at Rose Hill Burial Park, Ashland, Ky. Visitation from 6 to 8 p.m. Thursday at the funeral home. Contributions may be made to East Fork United Methodist Church Building Fund, 20100 State Route 3, Rush, KY 41168.
Our deepest and most heartfelt sympathy goes out to Hazel and the family.
Michael “COCO” Polakovs
Michael “COCO” Polakovs
By David Polakovs
Michael “COCO” Polakovs, 86, of Catlettsburg, Kentucky, passed from this life Sunday to that great center ring in the sky, December 6, 2009 at Kings Daughters Medical Center.
Michael was born February 23, 1923 in Riga, Latvia. He was the son of the late Nicolai and Valentina Novikoff Polakovs. Michael was a professional circus clown for nearly 80 years. COCO is a third generation Russian circus clown, who achieved his fame in England where the family came while he was a youth. He was associated wit the Bertam Mills and Billy Smart Circuses in England, which later included tours of Europe. He came to the U.S. in 1953 to work for a limited time with the Mills Brothers Circus, before returning to England. COCO later joined Ringling Brothers, Barnum & Bailey Circus 8 years as advance man and goodwill ambassador. He developed several classic clown routines. He later became an independent working clown, sometimes acting as an advance performer with similar shows. Additionally Michael was a member of Greenhill Masonic Lodge 521.
Michael leaves behind Hazel Fannin Polakovs, his loving wife of 49 years, and six children, Graham Ahrhart, Sarasota Fl., Patty Dale Dalton her husband Perry Dalton, Ashland, Ky., Byron Laird, Pippa Pass, Ky., Bruce Laird, Ashland, Ky., Michelle Polakovs, Catlettsburg, Ky., and David Polakovs his life partner, Wayne Houck San Francisco, Ca., Five grandchildren Mike Ahrhart, Melody Dalton Hogsten, Christopher Dalton, Stephanie Laird Maynard and Amanda Laird, fivegreat-grandchildren, Emma Dalton, Kayla Rice, Cole Maynard, and Alex Ahrhart, and a sister Olga Kerr of England.
Preceeded in death by three sisters and one brother.
A funeral ceremony to honor the extraordinary life of COCO will be conducted Friday December 11, 1PM at Neal Funeral Home, Center Street in Catlettsburg. A message of inspiration will be offered by Pastor Richie Gindlesperger and Donnie McKenzie. Final rest at Rose Hill Burial Park, Masonic Rites will follow committal. Those wishing to call on the Polakovs family may do so Thursday evening from 6PM until 8PM and one hour prior to service time on Friday.
In lieu of flowers contributions may be made to East Fork United Methodist Church Building fund, 20100 State Route 3, Rush, Ky. 41168.
Mr. Polakovs was a true master of his craft and the impact of his work, as a performer, instructor and as an inspiration, will continue to be felt throughout the international clown community for many, many years to come.