Co-Lin mourns the loss of longtime Board Member

It is great sadness that we share the news of the passing of longtime Co-Lin Board Member and former Board Chairman, Eugene “Gene” Bates of Church Hill. Bates passed away early Tuesday, Jan. 19 in Hattiesburg. A private graveside service will be held on Saturday, Jan. 23, 3 p.m. at Church Hill Methodist Church Cemetery. Laird Funeral Home in Natchez is in charge of the arrangements.

Co-Lin President Dr. Jane Hulon Sims said, “We are deeply saddened by the passing of Mr. Gene Bates. He served as a Board Member for 37 years, 17 years as chairman. We are thankful for his outstanding leadership, friendship, guidance and wisdom. He will be greatly missed by the Co-Lin family and his community. Mr. Bates continuously upheld the value of trust, accountability, caring, commitment and excellence. We are especially thankful for the passion he carried in his heart for Co-Lin.”

The Board of Trustees honored Bates on June 12, 2012, with the dedication of the P. Eugene Bates Men’s Residence Hall on the Wesson Campus.  

A ­­­­cattleman and conservationist, Bates is a graduate of the Jefferson County public school system and attended Copiah-Lincoln Community College. He received his bachelor’s and master’s degrees in agriculture from Mississippi State University.

Bates was an active member of First Baptist Church in Natchez, where he served as a deacon and Sunday school teacher.

Survivors include his wife, Susie Mae Bullen Bates; daughters, Evie Peavey and husband Woodie of Lucedale, MS Paula Green and husband Ron of Stewartsville, MO; grandchildren, Paul Green of Kansas City, MO, Shawn Sadler of Wiggins, MS, Elizabeth Bortell and husband Curtis of Centerville, IA, Matthew Green and wife Cara of Gower, MO, Daniel Sadler and wife Taylor of St. Joseph, MS, Lauren Green of St. Joseph, MO, Morgan Lundy and husband Spencer of Stewartsville, MO, Madison Green of Kansas City, MO, and Michael Green of Stewartsville, MO; great-grandchildren, Adrian and Elyse Green, Lily, Madalynn, Phoenix,  and Linkin Bortell, Sabina, Anna, Ambrose, Monica, Gabriel and Zelie Green, and Logan Lundy; brother George Bates and wife Linda of Church Hill, MS, and numerous nieces and nephews.