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Official Obituary of

Anthony Allyn "Tony" Gates

September 4, 1937 ~ October 28, 2023 (age 86) 86 Years Old
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Anthony Allyn "Tony" Gates Obituary

Anthony Allyn "Tony" Gates, 86, of Hensley, AR, passed away on October 28, 2023, after a valiant battle with Alzheimer’s disease.

Tony was born and raised in Crossett, AR, the great grandson of E.W. “Cap” Gates, one of the cofounders of the Crossett Lumber Company and the original community of Crossett. 

Great Grandfather Cap also had land and cattle interests in western Colorado, near Crawford.  Tony spent many childhood summers enjoying the Colorado mountains with his grandparents at the Gates family property on Crystal Creek.  Over the years, he continued to enjoy hunting on and caring for the property. His connection to the land and his family’s history were profound and enduring; Gates Camp and the surrounding area held a special place in his heart.

Prior to returning to Arkansas in 2012, Tony lived in Hotchkiss, CO for almost 20 years.

Tony was a decorated veteran, having proudly served in the United States Air Force from March 1960 to January 1979 retiring with the rank of Major. During his USAF career, he piloted the B-52 Stratofortress, the supersonic B-58 Hustler and finished his service flying rescue missions in the CH-53 “Jolly Green Giant” helicopter. He was a true hero having been awarded numerous medals and citations, including 5 Distinguished Flying Crosses. During the Vietnam War, his was one of five helicopters that performed the largest evacuation of the Southeast Asian conflict when they airlifted 132 American and Vietnamese out of Quang Tri. 

As a young boy, Tony loved flying and was inspired by his uncle Billy Gates, a pilot and veteran of WWII and Korea.  As early as his mom would allow (age 14!), he started taking flying lessons, joined the Civil Air Patrol and got his pilot's license even before his driver’s license!  Flying was truly the passion of his life, and he was lucky to be able to do that in his career and throughout his life. 

After his 20-year career in the Air Force, Tony flew as a private pilot and later owned his own airplane, flying as often as he could to see his grandchildren and family. Flying was truly the first passion of his life, and he was lucky to be able to do that in his career and throughout his life.

Tony's second passion was golf. He played regularly throughout his life and on some of the world's great golf courses such as St. Andrew’s in Scotland, Aldeburgh Golf Club near his home in England, and Pebble Beach in California. Tony was not only an avid golfer but a skilled one. During his 20+ years living in Hotchkiss, he and his buddies played as often as they could at Devil’s Thumb and Deer Creek regardless of weather and they never let a little thing like snow get in their way!

Tony was a man of strong Christian faith serving regularly in the roles of Deacon and Sunday School teacher.  He was a member of the First Baptist Church in Crossett, AR for many years.  He and his wife Donna were members of the North Fork Baptist in Paonia, CO during the years they lived in Hotchkiss.

Faith and family were the most important things in his life. He was a loving and dedicated husband, father, grandfather, brother and uncle, and his family knew they could always count on him to be there when they needed support.  He was a selfless and giving person and a true gentleman who was always ready to help those in need.

Tony is survived by his daughter Rose Anne Cato (Brett); daughter Robin Ducatillon (Regis); grandsons Miles Ducatillon, Luc Ducatillon, and Jac Ducatillon; sister Rose Roan; sister Ellen Massey and many beloved nieces & nephews. Tony was preceded in death by his wife Donna Dolan Gates; his parents Philip G Gates Jr and Lois P Gates; and his two brothers, Philip Gates III, and Michael Gates.

A Memorial Service for Tony will be held 10 AM on Saturday, March 30, 2024, at Medders Funeral Home, 1564 Hwy 52 W, in Crossett, AR. The family wishes for expressions of condolences to be made to the Anthony A and Donna Dolan Gates Scholarship Endowment at http://www.arcf.org/DolanGates, a veteran’s charity, or the Alzheimer's Association.

To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Anthony Allyn "Tony" Gates, please visit our floral store.

 Anthony Gates Service Program

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March 30, 2024

9:30 AM to 10:00 AM
Medders Funeral Home
1564 State Hwy 52 W
Crossett, AR 71635

Celebration of Life Memorial Service
March 30, 2024

10:00 AM
Medders Funeral Home
1564 State Hwy 52 W
Crossett, AR 71635


Anthony A and Donna Dolan Gates Scholarship Endowment
Web: http://www.arcf.org/DolanGates

Alzheimer's Association (Arkansas Chapter)
204 Executive Court, Suite 301, Little Rock AR 72205
Tel: 1-800-272-3900
Web: http://www.alz.org/join_the_cause_donate.asp


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