Virginia R. Gates

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Virginia R. Gates, 91, passed away Wednesday, Aug. 23, at Grant Regional Health Center. 


She was born July 24, 1926 the daughter of Harvey and Nettie (Kitelinger) Bass. Virginia attended Five Points Country School, and graduated from Lancaster High School in 1943. Prior to her marriage she was employed at the D&D Ben Franklin Store. On Oct. 14, 1946, she was united into marriage to John R. Gates. Together they farmed the Gates Family Farm in Beetown Township, retiring in 1980, before moving to Lancaster. She was a member of the Bloomington United Methodist Church and its Ruth Circle. She was also a member of the Royal Neighbors, and the Senior Citizens. Virginia enjoyed sewing, cooking, and a good game of cards.


Surviving is her daughter Patricia Sentar; her son Dennis (Debra) Gates; her grandchildren, Jeremy and Jeff Crow, John Gates, David (Danielle) Gates, Stephanie (Andrew) Kenning and Steven Gates; 12 great grandchildren  Aiden, Samiara, Scarlette, Kenzynton, Telana, Sadie and Laney Gates, Connor, Carter, Coltin, Courtney and Clinton Kenning; and many nieces and nephews.


She was preceded in death by her husband John, two sons David John and one in infancy; a son-in-law, Ray Sentar, sister Lela (Henry) Rech; and two brothers Walter (Etha) and Louis (Mildred “Tillie”) Bass.


Funeral services will be held on Sunday, Aug. 27, at 12:30 p.m. at Martin Schwartz Funeral Home & Crematory 1234 South Madison Street, Lancaster, with Pastor Mary Ann Floerke officiating. Burial will be in Blakes Prairie Cemetery, Bloomington. Family and friends may call on Sunday from 10 a.m. until time of services at the funeral home. Online condolences may be left at


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