The Bates Family

Happy Father’s Day 2013

by Kelly on June 16, 2013


  Tribute to an exceptional Dad: My dad was more than just a father; he was a friend! After I got married, he called every morning to check on me! He would give Bible verses for the day and pray with me. He’d take me out on dates once a week. When I had troubles or needed advice, I always turned to Dad! When I was having a hard day, Gil would say, “Why don’t you call your dad.” or “Why don’t you go have lunch with your dad?” It always worked too! Dad would have some spiritual nugget that would redirect my thoughts and help me think less about m20130617_012435y sorrows or stresses.

    It’s been ten years since my dad passed away on June 29, 2003… We all miss him so much, but we’re so blessed by the memories he left! Dad was a spiritual giant in my eyes! I’m grateful for every moment we had together. He’s still in many 20130617_010838of our conversations!

    My encouragement to you fathers is to be more than just a parent to your child. One day they won’t need your parenting; they’ll be grown and on their own…. Develop a relationship that goes much deeper… Develop an extra close friendship. They’ll never outgrow their need for a true friend and they’ll value that friendship long after you’re gone!


{ 25 comments… read them below or add one }

Leah June 17, 2013 at 11:17 am

Kelly, you looked so beautiful (and still are today) in those pictures with your dad! Glad you had a very close relationship with you dad and I’m sorry for your loss. It must gave you great comfort to know that you will see him again in heaven someday!


Piper June 17, 2013 at 1:39 pm

I love the picture of your Dad with the grandkids where they did his hair :) He looks so happy. It is the perfect picture of love.


Kirsty June 17, 2013 at 5:17 pm

How lovely to have had such a Godly Father. What lovely memories you must have of him.


Brenda H June 17, 2013 at 5:36 pm

What a beautiful tribute to your Dad! My sister and I are blessed that our Dad is still with us.He just turned 79 is always there for us. Hope Gil had a wonderful Father’s Day! God Bless!


Pam A. June 17, 2013 at 8:37 pm

I love the picture of you and your dad-it speaks volumes of your loving, easy relationship! My dad has been in heaven for 23 years; I miss him and his wisdom all the time! I am grateful to the Lord he was here on earth to hold my daughter for the first four months of her life! How thrilled he would have been to meet my son (born four years later)-the first male on my fathers side of the family (carrying the surname) in 69 years (since my father)! Thank you for sharing!


Julia June 17, 2013 at 10:50 pm

You are such a pretty lady Mrs.Bates!! Thanks for sharing!


Tina June 18, 2013 at 4:28 am

Great pix Kelly! Thanks for sharing your precious Dad with us. It was also great to see the picture of the older kids from back in the day! :)


Henry June 18, 2013 at 10:29 am

Kelly, I was so blessed to know your dad and to be around him. He sure was a man who loved the Lord and loved people. He had a good influence on me and I miss his fellowship.


Val Young June 18, 2013 at 10:55 am

What a wonderful testimony and legacy he has left behind. You are blessed


Wow June 18, 2013 at 11:26 am

Dear Kelly,

No wonder your daughters look like contestants in a Miss America competition. You look like a beauty queen in those pics! Thank you for sharing your memories with us and your Dad looks like a very loving person. It is a rare privilege to have such a father, you know. Blessed be his memory.


Khiana June 18, 2013 at 3:51 pm

Hi Kelly

Your dad looks like he was great fun. Thank you for sharing loving memories of you dad on Father’s Day.


Louise June 19, 2013 at 3:08 am

I can’t tell you how much I enjoy following your family. It brings a lift to my day to see a new post with news and wonderful photos. Thanks for being willing to share your lives with us!


Jody June 19, 2013 at 5:15 am

Great advice for the fathers out there. The great sorrow of my life was not having the opportunity to know my dad as an adult.


Laurie June 19, 2013 at 1:36 pm

Wow, doesn’t Trace look like your Dad?? How special when we can see our parents in our children. =) I’ve been following your blogs for a few years now, and I am so glad there are helpful Christian families like yours, who will share some great tips with us, on child-rearing & resources. I have checked into each & every resource on your website, and have implemented many of the book suggestions, music cd’s, and parenting strategies. Thank you for every time you share these things with us.


Diane Dye June 21, 2013 at 6:54 am

Hi Kelly,

Thank you for sharing these pictures of your dad and you, and of your kids. The picture of Erin when she was 5 is so adorable as well, and I think the older little girl must be Michael. My grandfather (I called him Papaw) was a HUGH influence in my life as well. My dad was too for different reasons. Both loved me unconditionally. My grandfather loved the Bible and to share with others its contents. He was a wonderful example to family and friends alike, always giving of his time and talents. In the middle of the night he would get calls sometimes and would go rescue someone, fix a broken down car, etc. He could fix anything with parts or an engine and raised the biggest garden you could imagine. Corn, beans, tomatoes, potatoes, cabbage, etc. He was so smart and ahead of his time, though he never had the opportunity to finish his high school education. His mom died when he was 15 and he and his brothers helped raise the rest of his sibblings. (7 boys and 1 girl) Before we ever heard of the word “organic”, he and I am sure others of that time period, were raising their own vegetables and fruits without all the sprays and pesticides. He could cut out and sew a dress for my 3′ doll with no pattern, play almost any instrument, sing very well, and have us all laughing with his stories. We did not realize at the time how much we would miss them later on. He impacted us all, as most fathers do, in a way only a father/grandfather can. I am grateful for the time we had together as I am sure you are too. This life is so short compared to the blessings in the future promised in the Bible. Take care and say hello to your husband for me! Dads can never hear too often how much we appreciate them, and that goes for husbands too!! =) Have a beautiful day!

Christian Love,
Diane Dye


Christy June 25, 2013 at 1:15 am

So special :)


Brenda Callaham June 25, 2013 at 3:36 am

I so enjoyed the fathers day message about granddad he was such an important man in my life, I also still pull strength from many things that he taught me he was such a good father to me also, he was an encourager even in the last words he spoke to me, He said as I held his hand “Thank you for being such a good wife to my son” No one else could understand how important those words were to me but it covered a life time and would help me through the rest of my married life I loved your father and still I thank God for him and the wisdom he shared. Love you Kelly!


Kelly June 25, 2013 at 8:06 pm

Dearest Brenda,
You have been the best sister-in-law and friend. Dad loved you like his own, and it’s no wonder! You’re an amazing woman. I tell everyone: you are my role model for a wife. Your example helped shape our marriage! I thank you more than words can say! Love, Kelly


Ruth June 26, 2013 at 11:35 pm

Such a beautiful woman you are, Kelly! God has greatly blessed you in having a wonderful family! In the last photo, Erin’s hair is a brownish color…did it ever change to a blond??? God bless!


Kelly June 28, 2013 at 5:31 pm

Erin’s hair is blondish-light brown. At times it looks more blonde because of the sun. Pics might distort it and make it look browner than it really is. The other girls all have darker hair, but Nathan and Erin both stayed blonder. Love, Kelly


Junebug July 2, 2013 at 1:19 am

I don’t usually comment. But Kelly, in the picture of you with your Granddad you look very similar to The Duchess of Cambridge! You are very beautiful!


Sheila Tackett July 10, 2013 at 4:04 am

It seems you certainly were blessed with a wonderful father. Thank you for sharing your memories and some of the pictures. I can’t believe how much Trace looks like your father’s young pictures. And Carlin looks so much like you in the 1985 picture. Also, your youngest children almost look like clones of the older children in the 1996 picture ( I’m guessing they are Zach, Michael, Erin, Lawson and Nathan). :) And, of course, you know I think you have a wonderful – beautiful family! :)
Hope to see you all soon! :)
God bless :)


Linda July 29, 2013 at 12:34 am

Dear Kelly,
Thank you for sharing the photos and memories of your dad with us. it is lovely to see the love, joy and happiness in those photos.
My mum passed away when I was just into my 20′s and my dad 10 years ago, I’m an only child. I still miss them terribly. My dad was able to spend the first years of their lives with his first two grandchildren before he passed away, he died a month before the birth of my 3rd and last child which was very sad. He was a great “papa” to our boys, spent lots of time with them and gave them loads of love and taught them a lot too. He has a special bond with my first born, dad was diagnosed with cancer around the time I found out I was exspecting my first and I truly beleive God sent my son to help my dad through his illness, gave him something to live for, and it did. Sadly my husbands parents have shared no interest in our children which saddens both of us, the children don’t know things any other way,they are older now, they haven’t realy had the joy grandparents can bring since my dad passed away. we are just so thankful that he had those few years with us.
You & Gill are so tryuly blessed with a wonderful family, God Bless you all.


Marian Martin McMahan October 18, 2013 at 3:26 pm

Hi Kelly,
This was a great tribute to your Dad. I am from Spartanburg and I remember going to his home Bible study back in the early 1970s. Although I live in Western NC now, my oldest son is a graduate of Clemson University and my other two children are graduates of North Greenville University, so we still have some of the same “stomping grounds” in life! I love watching how God is working in your family and the inspiration it is to so many.


Kelly October 21, 2013 at 11:34 pm

Dear Marian,
I almost started crying when I read your note…memories!! I don’t remember having met you back then, but a friend of my Dad’s is a friend of mine. I was blessed to have him as a father. I miss him greatly! Love, Kelly


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