Bates, Thomas Ralph, Bridgeport, Michigan

Passed away Monday, July 30, 2012, at Covenant- Cooper. Age 67 years. The son of the late Ralph and Edith (Jones) Bates was born November 23, 1944 in Owosso, Michigan. He married Debra Kay (Dietzel) Snelenberger, July 22, 2000. She survives him. He served with the U. S. Navy for four years and was employed by Saginaw Steering Gear (Delphi) retiring in 1999 with 33 years of service. He was a member of U.A. W. Local 699 and was an avid fisherman and NASCAR fan. Surviving besides his wife, Debra, are a son and daughter and their spouses, Thomas and Trena Bates, Chesaning, MI; Kelly and Kris Stankov, Denver, CO; three granddaughters, Jaden, Kira and Aryian; two stepchildren and their girl friends, Jason Snelenberger and Sandy; Jeremy Snelenberger and Rachel; two sisters, a brother and their spouses, Mary Ann and Erich Stark, Higgins Lake, MI; Carole and Alfred Otte, Waterloo, WI; Dennis and Doris Bates, Vassar, MI; several nieces and nephews. A granddaughter, Shelby Bates and two brothers, Danny and Carl Bates have predeceased him. The funeral service will take place on Friday, August 3, 2012 at 11:30 a.m. at the W. L. Case and Co. Funeral Chapel, 5700 Dixie Hwy. Rev. Rob Richards will officiate with Military burial in Pinegrove Cemetery, Bridgeport under the auspices of V.F.W. Post # 1859. Friends may call at the Chapel from 2:00-7:00 p.m. Thursday. Those planning an expression of sympathy may wish to consider the American Cancer Society.