Born Feb. 23, 1964 in Enid, Okla., to Rev. and Mrs. M. David Bates, and passed away November 19, 2010, after a long battle with colon cancer. He was raised as the son of a Methodist minister, and grew up around the state of Oklahoma. He graduated from Henryetta High School, Henryetta, Okla., in 1982 and attended East Central University in Ada, Okla., where he earned a Bachelor of Music Education degree.


Born Feb. 23, 1964 in Enid, Okla., to Rev. and Mrs. M. David Bates, and passed away November 19, 2010, after a long battle with colon cancer. He was raised as the son of a Methodist minister, and grew up around the state of Oklahoma. He graduated from Henryetta High School, Henryetta, Okla., in 1982 and attended East Central University in Ada, Okla., where he earned a Bachelor of Music Education degree.

 

After teaching school for a couple of years, Steve decided to pursue a career in funeral service. He was employed by Service Corporation International, the parent company of Dignity Memorial Funeral Homes for 19 years and was very proud to have been associated with them. In 1988, he went to work for Reser Funeral Home in Healdton, Okla., as an apprentice funeral director and embalmer. He came to Dallas in 1989 where he attended the Dallas Institute of Funeral Service and worked part-time at Sparkman/Hillcrest Funeral Home on Garland Road in Dallas. He graduated from the Dallas Institute of Funeral Service in 1990 with an Associate of Applied Science degree in Funeral Service and was valedictorian of his class. He and his family went back to Oklahoma for a short period and came back to Dallas in 1991, where he went back to work for Sparkman/Hillcrest Garland Road. The name of this firm was later changed to Sparkman/Crane Funeral Home and Steve continued to work there. In 1995 he was promoted to assistant manager at the Sparkman Funeral Home in Richardson and later came back to Sparkman/Crane where he was promoted to manager. In 2000, Steve became the general manager of Grove Hill Funeral Home and Cemetery, where he has been ever since.

 

Steve was a member of Holy Trinity Episcopal Church in Garland. He was an avid sports fan and loved to ride his motorcycle, but God, family and church were the most important things to him. He met his wife Leslie as a 7th grader in Ardmore, Okla. They began dating at the age of 15 and were married on August 4, 1984, in Ardmore. She was the love of his life.

 

He is survived by his wife of 26 years, Leslie; daughter and son-in-law, Carol and Patrick Camacho; daughters, Sarah and Mary; and son, John; mother, Mrs. Elaine Bates of Oklahoma City; brother and sister-in-law, Matt and Amy Bates of Virginia; brother and sister-in-law, Phil and Patty Bates of Georgia; brother and sister-in-law, Tom and Kellye Bates of Oklahoma City; mother and father-in-law, Jack and Linda Blackwood of Ardmore, Okla; sister and brother-in-law, Beth and Jesus Chavez of Garland; sister-in-law, Jennifer Finley of Ardmore; and a host of other nieces, nephews, aunts, uncles, cousins  and other relatives and friends.

 

Steve is preceded in death by his father, Rev. M. David Bates.

 

There will be a visitation for Steve at Grove Hill Funeral Home on Monday, from 6 until 8 p.m., with a Service of Remembrance at 7 p.m. The funeral service will be 10 a.m., Tuesday, November 23, 2010, at Holy Trinity Episcopal Church, 3217 Guthrie Rd., The Rev. J.D. Brown officiating. Interment will be in Grove Hill Memorial Park, Dallas.

 

Services are under the direction of Grove Hill Funeral Home.