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Joseph W. Bates, Jr.

July 19, 1934 ~ January 26, 2021 (age 86)


Joseph W. Bates, Jr., 86, passed away on Tuesday, January 26, 2021.  Born on July 19, 1934, Joseph was a child of the Great Depression, and, like many of that era, came from humble beginnings.   While material possessions were few during his childhood, Joseph was rich in the love and support provided to him by his parents, Joseph W. Bates, Sr. and Gertrude Rose Bates, as well as his many siblings.

 It was clear at an early age that Joseph excelled at all things pertaining to carpentry.  Armed with this gift and a desire to create, it was natural for Joseph to become a home builder.  His work ethic and passion for his work led to a successful career that spanned over 50 years.  Joseph built hundreds of homes across Southern Indiana, taking pride in each one.  He was known for his honesty and fairness in all his business endeavors and will be missed in the building community.

While Joseph took great satisfaction from his work, the real love of his life was his family, starting with his beautiful wife, Iris Bates, who he married in December of 1953 and remained with until her death in 1995.  Joseph and Iris were blessed with four adoring children:  Barbara Trudy Bates, Patti N.  Cummins, Joseph W. Bates III, and Douglas B. Bates, all of whom survive their parents.

Joseph also shared a warm and loving relationship with his son-in-law Terry Cummins and his two daughters-in law Jacqueline Bates and Elizabeth Bates, as well as his many grandchildren and great grandchildren.  Joseph is also survived by his sister, Virginia Long, whom he loved dearly.  He also leaves behind many extended family members and a host of dear friends.

A private funeral service will be held Saturday at the Garr Funeral Home in Sellersburg with burial to follow at Mountain Grove Cemetery.  Visitation will be Friday from 3-8PM for the public.  Online condolences can be made at

To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Joseph W. Bates, Jr., please visit our floral store.


January 29, 2021

3:00 PM to 8:00 PM
Garr Funeral Home
7806 Hwy 311
Sellersburg, IN 47172

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