William Lee Bates

Mr. William Lee Bates was born in Hattiesburg, Mississippi on April 9, 1926 and passed away July 25, 2019 at Lackey Memorial Hospital in Forest, after an extended illness at the age of 93.

A veteran of the United States Air Force, Mr. Bates was a Catholic by faith and was an attendee of St. Michael’s Catholic Church. A simple man, he was an avid gardener and enjoyed the television series “Gunsmoke.”

He is preceded in death by his first wife: Ella Mae Bates; five children: an infant child, Johnny, Betty Sue, William Leon, and Patsy Jean; three grandsons: David, Tinker, and Bobby; his parents: Will and Minnie Allen Bates; and 18 siblings.

Survivors include his wife, Edna; six children: Edna, Loretta, Peggy, Mary, Debbie and Christy; six grandchildren, 11 great-grandchildren and six great-great grandchildren; one brother: Jack Bates; and a host of nieces and nephews.

A mass of Christian burial was celebrated on Tuesday, July 30, 2019 at 10:00 am from St. Michael’s Catholic Church, 1341 E. Third St., Forest, MS.

Military graveside rites began at 2:00 pm, also on Tuesday, from the Mississippi Veteran’s Memorial Cemetery, 258 Honor Circle, Newton, MS.

The family received friends from 4:00 pm – 7:00 pm on Monday, July 29, 2019 at Ott & Lee Funeral Home, 295 E. First St., Forest, MS.

Ott & Lee Funeral Home assisted the Bates family in planning service details.

Online condolences may be signed and viewed at www.ottandlee.com