William Edward Bates
June 22, 1954 – June 18, 2022
It’s with indescribable sorrow that we inform you that our beloved Bill has passed on to be with his friend, Jesus. He was born William Edward Bates on June 22, 1954 to Frank and Harriet, in Red Deer, Alta. He left us peacefully on June 18, 2022, at the age of 67 in Trail, B.C.
Bill grew up on the Bates farm in the Condor area, attending Condor and David Thompson schools. He always enjoyed sports, being outdoors and watching Saturday night hockey with his dad. His love for trucks started in his early years. Seeing the milk truck on the farm made driving a truck his dream job.
He began his working career doing various jobs starting at Rocky Wood Preservers. From there he did a stint of the drilling rigs, where his hearing was damaged. This led to a lifetime of being sure everyone “mumbled.” In the late ’80s, his dad helped him to purchase his first tank truck and thus began Bill Bates Trucking. He contracted under a few local companies — Isle of the Skye, Trail Breaker and Capital Pressure — and then went independent. He started with a single truck and grew his fleet to include other subcontractors and more trucks. Bill continued to grow his business until his retirement in 2018 when son, Tyler and Tanya took over. Through his time as a business owner, Bill influenced many coworkers, employees, bosses, subcontractors — ultimately everyone who he encountered.
Bill became a Christian through the prayers and guidance of many people. Larry and Jean Stewart were a huge part of his faith journey and he referred to them as his “spiritual parents.” Bill was baptized on May 1, 1991. He loved his church family at Living Branches in Rocky Mountain House where he was an active member in leadership and service. Upon moving to Nakusp, B.C., Bill and Cathleen found a welcoming church community at Arrow Lakes Alliance Church.
During his first marriage, Bill became the father to Jayson, Jeremy, Tyler and stepfather to Amber. Bill met the love of his life, Cathleen Brouwer in 1991 and they were married December 5, 1992. They resided in Rocky Mountain House until October 2020, when they moved permanently to Nakusp, B.C., to pursue and enjoy retired life. Bill loved the outdoors: hiking, biking, sledding, fishing, motorcycling, ATV’s … taking every opportunity to enjoy God’s creation with family and friends.
Bill will be deeply missed by his wife Cathleen. His sons: Jayson (Jayme and Cale), Jeremy and Nova Brook and Lucas (Zoey), Kyra and Keifer and Hailey (Keegan and Lily); daughter-in-law, Tanya (Hayden, Sieana and Jesse), and Amber and BJ Bott (Layne and Corban); and his mother Harriet Bates. His siblings: Debbie (Dan), Mary, Judy, Sharon (Kevin), Beverly, Danny (Linda), Dave and Rodney. Cathleen’s parents, John and Jean; and siblings: Debbie (Larry), Brenda (Robert), Ken (Cheri-Lynn), Reuben (Emily); and numerous nieces, nephews and extended families.
Bill was predeceased by his father Frank, son Tyler, sister Susan, and half-brother Jeff.
Bill leaves behind a legacy of helpfulness. When he saw a need, he would fill it. Whether it was for family, neighbors, or across the globe. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to Nehemiah Construction (Box 23029, Medicine Hat, AB T1B 4C7, or at nehemiahconstruction.ca), a ministry close to Bill’s heart which provides clean water to the Turkana region in Kenya.
A celebration of life will take place Monday, June 27, 2022, at 1:30 p.m., First Christian Reformed Church, Rocky Mountain House. Refreshments to follow.