Donald Ray Bates

October 10, 1937December 25, 2018

Donald Ray Bates, age 81, of Randolph, Alabama passed away on Tuesday December 25, 2018. Don was born October 10, 1937 in Steppeville, Alabama. Don proudly served in the United States Air Force as a basic airman. He worked as an electrician for S & W Electric and retired in 1994. He and his family were members of Family Campers and RVers, formerly known as National Campers and Hikers Association; they have been traveling and camping throughout the U.S. and Canada since 1972. Upon retirement Don and his wife Marjory volunteered with the Disaster Recovery Team of the American Red Cross; they assisted with flood recovery in the Midwest, tornado relief in Alabama and Oklahoma, and hurricane relief in Louisiana and Alabama. Don was also a member of Randolph Baptist Church, and enjoyed singing in the choir and assisting with vacation bible school. Until his health would no longer allow it, he was the chief of Randolph Volunteer Fire Department and a member of the Bibb Medical Center Auxiliary.

Preceding him in death are his parents, Loman Bates and Pauline Kerley; son, Carl Bates; and sister, Martha Jane Pitts.

Left behind to cherish his memory is his loving wife of 59 and a half years Marjory Merchant Bates; children, Raymond Bates (Regina), Bruce Bates (Argelia), and Vera Williams (Tom); grandchildren, Braydon Bates, John Williams, Thomas Williams, Alexandria Bates, and Garrett Bates; brother, Ralph Bates (Dorothy); sister-in-law, Virginia Miller; brothers-in-law, Ovid Merchant Jr. and Charles Lee Williams (Carol); as well as several nieces and nephews.

Visitation will be held at Randolph Baptist Church in Randolph, Alabama on Saturday, December 29, 2018 from 12:00 pm - 2:00 pm followed by a Funeral Service at 2:00 pm. Burial will be at Randolph Baptist Church Cemetery.

Don led a very full and gracious life; he gave so much of his life to charity through his volunteer work, to honor his memory the family request in lieu of flowers donations be made to Ronald McDonald House at

Fond memories and expressions of sympathy may be shared at for the Bates family.



  • Visitation Saturday, December 29, 2018
  • Funeral Service Saturday, December 29, 2018


  • Burial

Donald Ray Bates

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Judy Miller

December 29, 2018

Marjory, so sorry I'm unable to be there! Our trip to France is going well, but my thoughts return to you, knowing the next year in particular will be difficult. Things you loved together will again happen, first seconds you will want to share with Don about this or that and you will suddenly realize he is not there to share with. Lonesome times, but this I know; you will continue as before. You both always amazed me in jumping right back into things and not letting health reasons keep you down! I love you!