It is with great sadness that the family of James Robert Bates (Sonny) of Valparaiso, Indiana; announces his passing on September 29, 2018 at the age of 81. James was born on May 30, 1937 in Valparaiso, Indiana to Robert and Mary Bates.
James was a true patriarch of his family. He enjoyed being outside doing anything on the water. He passed that love on to his children and grandchildren. James was a big supporter of Wounded Warriors and St. Jude’s Children’s Hospital.
James was preceded in death by his wife; Feliciana Valino Bates, his parents; Robert E Bates and Mary Jessie Bates, his sons; Charles Ray Bates and Raymond Lee Bates, his sisters; Rose Lee Vassuer and Mary E Abel.
James is survived by his children Tina LaCourse, James R. Bates Jr, Donna (George) Kirshbaum, and Michael Ray Bates. Ten grandchildren; Robert LaCourse, Christina Wampler, Patrick LaCourse, Jenifer Massengill, Tiffany Ranney, Amber Bates, James Robert Bates III, Katie Baker, Donna Ranney, and Savanna Bates, 21 great-grandchildren and 1 great-great grandchild.
Visitation will be held on Saturday, October 6, 2018 from 10:00-12:00pm at Graceland Cemetery, with burial on Monday October 8, 2018 at Rosehill Catholic Cemetery in Chicago, Illinois.
In lieu of flowers the family requests that you make a donation in memory of James to your favorite charity