William “Shorty” R. Bates, age 82, of Dahinda, Illinois died at 11:22 P.M. on Wednesday, January 17, 2018 at the Methodist Medical Center in Peoria, Illinois. Shorty was born on December 19, 1935 in Hazel Green, Alabama, the son of John G. and Alene Pierce Bates. He served in the United States Army. He married Dorris Collins on September 17, 1963 in Fayetteville, Tennessee. She preceded him in death on November 17, 1992. He later married Grace Downard Matern on April 29, 1995 in Laura, Illinois. Surviving is his wife, Grace Bates of Dahinda, Illinois; his children: Michael A. Bates of Hazel Green, Alabama, Penny (Byron) Devers of Galesburg, Illinois, Gina (Dennis) Bantz of Williamsfield, Illinois, Katrina (Dana) Dorethy of Laura, Illinois, Ed (Erin) Matern of Monmouth, Illinois, John Matern of Peoria, Illinois; thirteen grandchildren; twenty great-grandchildren; his sister, Fannie Collins of Yates City, Illinois. He loved and spoiled his dog, Sadie. He was a Papa to many, especially his nieces and nephews. He was preceded in death by his wife, Dorris; three sons; one daughter; one grandson; one great-grandson, Keegan; one brother; and one sister. He retired from Caterpillar as a Millwright after thirty years. He loved his family and friends. He loved playing his banjo and playing Bluegrass music. He enjoyed tinkering, his tools, and mowing. He liked telling jokes to his family and friends. A Celebration of Life will be held from 2:00 P.M. to 4:00 P.M. on Sunday, January 21, 2018, at the Hurd-Hendricks Funeral Home & Crematory in Knoxville, Illinois. Burial will be at Wright's Cemetery in McBurg, Tennessee at a later date. Memorials may be made to the family. Hurd-Hendricks Funeral Homes & Crematory in Knoxville, Illinois is in charge of arrangements. On-line condolences and expressions of sympathy may be made through www.hurd-hendricksfuneralhome.com
To send flowers or a memorial gift to the family of William "Shorty" R. Bates please visit our Sympathy Store.
To send flowers to the family in memory of William "Shorty" R. Bates, please visit our flower store