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Obituary for Almond "Al" J. Bates
Almond “Al” Jared Bates was born in Gallop, New Mexico to Jared Millure Bates and Helen Elizabeth Seeley, and died April 28, 2015 at the age of 80. He grew up in Colorado Springs, Colo. where he participated in a number of activities, including soap box car racing and raising American Quarter Horses, before graduating from Colorado Springs High School in 1952. After high school, Bates went to work for Montgomery Ward in Colorado Springs and Duval Mining Company in Southern Arizona. He met his wife of 51 years, Shirley Mae Miller, in Fort Collins, Colo. in 1953. They were married on June 12, 1955. He enrolled at Cal State University Long Beach to pursue a bachelor’s degree in Industrial Arts and graduation in 1977. Upon graduation, Bates spent more than 10 years in education working in woodshop and with special needs students before retiring in 1991. He and Shirley moved from Lake Elsinore, Calif. to Brookings, Ore. in 1992 where they became very active in the local community. Bates joined the Brookings Police Department’s Volunteers in Police Service (VIPS) program in Jan. 1997 and became a reserve police officer in June 1998. In 2000, Bates was named Volunteer of the Year by the city of Brookings for his work as a patrolman in the area and other duties, this according to an article in the Curry Coastal Pilot. Most recently, Bates worked as a shuttle driver for the Cook County Transportation Department where he created strong friendships with the people he worked with and encountered daily. He drove his route almost every day until his health prevented him from doing so, his family said. Bates is preceded in death by his wife who died in 2006, and a number of animals, including his two beloved Dobermans, Trixie and Angie. He is survived by three daughters, Gina Perales of Yorba Linda, Calif.; Latese Hernandez of San Bernardino, Calif.; and Katie Lackey of Lake Elsinore, Calif.; and six grandchildren. A private service will be held at a later date. In lieu of flowers, please send donations in his name to St. Joseph’s Indian School, P.O. Box 326, Chamberlin, SD 57326 or St. Labre Indian School, Ashland, MT 59004. “Okay, bye.”