Edwin L. Bates 1924 - 2018    

Edwin L. Bates. 
Then and Now.

Our community sadly lost a pillar on Tuesday July 31,2018, when Edwin L. Bates, 94, passed away from natural causes surrounded by his loving family.

Born in Wadsworth in 1924 to E.C. and Gertrude (Connor) Bates, Edwin graduated from Wadsworth High School in 1942.   He attended Niagara University until joining the U.S. Air Force in 1943.   In May 1944, he graduated as a Second Lieutenant and trained as a P-47 Thunderbolt pilot.  On Christmas Eve 1944, he left for duty and flew in the European campaign until VE Day, coming home as a decorated soldier.

Edwin married Peggy Poe August 4th, 1945, and they were about to celebrate their 73rd year of marriage with their five children!   He completed his Business degree at Kent State University and joined his father in the insurance and real estate business at The Bates Agency, believing that value and service were the guideposts of a good business.   After forty-two years of business, he sold to Padgett Young and began to enjoy his eleven grandchildren in retirement.

His many contributions to the community of Wadsworth included serving as a Councilman for six years, a mayoral appointed member of the Safety Commission for several years, a member of the Civil Service Commission for thirteen years, and a member of the Wadsworth Chamber of Commerce.   He also served a twenty-seven-year stint as an Advisory Board member for the Salvation Army of Wadsworth in which he was a Life member.

He served as a Life member and an usher at Sacred Heart Church was a forty-one year member of the Fraternal Order of Eagles, a valued member of the Wadsworth Gyro Club, and supported veterans in our area as a Life member of the VFW and American Legion for forty-five years, serving as the head of the Memorial Day Parade Committee for twenty years.

He was a charter member of the Rittman and Wadsworth Independent Golf Association (Rawiga) as Mr. Bates was an avid golfer.   He was also a gardener, baker, sports fan and grandfather extraordinaire.   He rarely missed a Grizzly football, basketball, volleyball game nor a wrestling match.   He loved his music and Silver Sneakers exercise.

Edwin is survived by his loving wife of 73 years, Peggy;  their four sons, Larry (Joan) of St. Petersburg, Fla., John (Barb) of Renton, Wash., Mike (Pepper) of Wadsworth, and Charles (Jennifer) of Defiance, Ohio.   He also leaves daughter, Barb (Gordon) Dodson also of Wadsworth;  eleven grandchildren and twenty-six great-grandchildren.

He was preceded in death by his parents;  two brothers, Walter of Shaker Heights, Ohio, and Tom of Bellevue, Iowa;  and two infant sisters, Mary and Norma.

Family and friends may gather at Sacred Heart Church, 260 Broad St., Wadsworth for visitation at 10 a.m. one hour prior to Mass at 11 a.m. on Monday, August 6, 2018.

Memorial contributions may be made to the Salvation Army of Wadsworth, 527 College St., Wadsworth, OH 44281.  

Arrangements made by Hillard Rospert Funeral Home.

Published in Akron Beacon Journal on Aug. 4, 2018

   Edwin Bates
   Wadsworth High School
   Graduating Class of 1942         

WHS Mens Glee Club, 1941-42.
  Row 1:  Allen Barnett, Loren Croskey, Jack Blough, Robert McDaniel, Wilbur Cook, Jack Casenhiser, Ed Mason, Jack Mueller.  Row 2: Glenn Clifford, Howard Fraley, Jack Redinger, Jim Sailors, Ed Bates, Dick Pirman, Gerald Rock, Mr. Sears (Director).  Row 3: Carl Robinson, Andrew Kelly, Preston Clements, Walter Bates (Accompanist), Charles Police, Kingley Sears, Jr., Kenneth Gilligan.                       
WHS Drama Club, 1941-42. 
Row 1: Jim Cleckner, Robert Sippel, Tom Seifert, Howard Fraley.  Row 2: Eleanor Sears, Lillian Dietz, Lois Rohrer, Dorothy McMullen, Glee Kritchbaum, Shirley Bachman, Jean Cromley, Esther Melvin, Marion Young, Mary E. Overholt.  Row 3: Maxine Coppage, Gizella Taylor, Bonnie Baker, Rita Gairing, Patty Welch, Dorris Leaf, Mary E. Alderfer, Bonnie Jones, Beatrice Mann, Nancy Simester, Miss Magly (Advisor).  Row 4: Mr. Giffin (Advisor), Ed Bates, Glen Westenbarger, Jack Parkinson, Don Taylor, Jim Sailors, Walter Bates, Carlyle Freeborn, Don Fiely.                    
Steph Schmeltzer  (WHS 1997), Chair, Wadsworth High School Alumni Association. 524 Broad Street, Wadsworth, OH 44281.    Past obituaries, class information, and alumni news is available at www.wadsworthalumni.com.  Please contact us at whsalumni.1@gmail.com . To view WCTV television programs featuring Wadsworth High School and other Wadsworth news, go to http://my.viebit.com.   Please consider becoming a supporting member of the Alumni Association by sending a check addressed to "WHS ALUMNI ASSOC."  for $10 (annual dues) or $100 (lifetime dues) to Sally Porter, WHSAA Treasurer, 524 Broad Street, Wadsworth, OH 44281. Reduced Membership Rates for WHS Alumni Couples! $150 per couple for lifetime memberships; $25 per couple for yearly dues.