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1944 - 2014 Obituary Condolences
GARY BATES Gary B. Bates, 69, of Las Vegas, passed away July 11, 2014. He was born Dec. 19, 1944, in Dumas, Texas, to John and Betty Barfield, both deceased. He attended St. Peter's Catholic School, Henderson, and graduated from Bishop Gorman High School in 1963 before enlisting and proudly serving in the U.S. Marine Corps. He began his career as a professional heavyweight boxer in 1966 under the tutelage of former Governor Mike O'Callaghan and future U.S. Senator Harry Reid. A Nevada State Heavyweight Champion, Gary fought future world champion Ken Norton in 1969, as well as future world title challengers Ron Lyle in 1971 and Gerry Cooney in 1978. He was both a sparring partner for and personal friend to former heavyweight champion Sonny Liston. Friends and classmates remember him as a tough, courageous, and loyal person. His countless blood and platelet donations are overshadowed only by his bone marrow donation that saved the life of a one-year-old boy. This only added to the list of numerous heroics, including: pulling a man out of a burning truck on the I-15, saving a woman pinned in her car on Industrial Road, and chasing a purse snatcher before felling him with a right jab. Gary's career as a blackjack dealer peaked at Mandalay Bay, where he entertained guests and employees alike with vivid stories of a vintage Las Vegas. Gary is survived by his wife, of 29 years, Carmen; and their two daughters, Danielle and Jacqueline. Memorial Mass will be at 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 2, at St. Anne's Catholic Church, 1901 S. Maryland Parkway. Memorial donations may be made to Nathan Adelson Hospice, 4141 Swenson St., Las Vegas, NV 89119.
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