Walter Gates, 90, passed away peacefully with his children by his side on Friday, April 16, 2021 at Iowa Methodist Hospital.
No services will be held at this time. Laufersweiler Funeral Home is serving the family.
Born April 22, 1930 in Greenwood, Mississippi to William and Birdie Gates. Survived by his children Walter Lynn Gates of St. Paul, MN, Mark Gates, Minneapolis, MN, Annette Gates, Edina, MN, and Pam Hamrick of Des Moines, IA. He is also survived by 7 grandchildren and 8 great-great-grandchildren.
He was preceded in death by the love of his life, Jeannette Gates, parents, William and Birdie (Webb) Gates, brothers; Robert, F.M., and Percy.
As a young man Walter, determined to make a better life for himself fled rural Mississippi as part of the “Great Migration” to the north. He arrived in Fort Dodge, Iowa in 1951. It was there at a Saturday night YWCA dance that he observed a single young lady dancing in the corner to the sounds of Count Basie. That young lady, Jeannette Patterson later became his wife. Together they were blessed with four children. Walter worked hard all of his life to provide opportunities for his family that he didn’t have as a child. He was an honest and loving father who led by examples of determination, hard work and respect for others. Those who loved him will sadly miss him.
Memorials may be left to family discretion.