Born in Macon County, he was the son of the late Boyd and Lola Watts Bates. He was a kind man, loving father, grandfather and great-grandfather. He loved dancing and gardening, fishing and his work building steel forms to mold concrete for his company, Western Carolina Steel. He was a charter member of the Georgia Septic Tank association and a member of the Episcopal Church in Valdosta, Georgia.
Mr. Bates is survived by two daughters, Sharie Elliott of Valdosta, Georgia and Deborah Linke, of Pontiac, Michigan; one step-daughter, Kathryn Miley of Hahira, Georgia; one son, David Bates of Allen Park, Michigan; one sister, Winnie Bates Vinson of Franklin, North Carolina; two brothers, Chuck Bates of Franklin, North Carolina, and Nelse Bates of Franklin, North Carolina; eight grandchildren, and seven great-grandchildren.
In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by one son, Doug Bates; one sister, Joyce Bates Lewis; and two brothers, Clyde Bates, and Dennis Bates.
Funeral services will be held Thursday, May 15, 2014 at 2:00 PM in the Chapel of Bryant-Grant Funeral Home with Rev. Don Moffitt officiating. Burial will be in the Rush Cemetery with full military rites conducted by Franklin VFW Post #7339 and American Legion Post #108. Pallbearers will be Michael Lewis, Danny Bates, Greg Bates, Tom Law, Sigurd Stenersen and Matt Elliott. The family will receive friends Thursday from 1:00 to 2:00 PM, one hour prior to the service, at Bryant-Grant Funeral Home.
In lieu of flowers, the family is requesting donations to be made to Lanier Animals Partnership and Support, PO Box 401, Lakeland, GA 31635.
Bryant-Grant Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements. Online condolences may be made at bryantgrantfuneralhome.com.