REVEREND LOUIE LAGOMARSINO GATES The Reverend Louie Lagomarsino Gates closed his eyes unexpectedly to this world Saturday, October 19, 2013 at his home in Chico, California. Born on May 31, 1939, in Chico to the late Nathen and Albina Gates, he attended Chico schools, graduating from Chico Junior and Senior High. A popular student, he was elected as the first male CHS cheerleader. He loved to dance and had training in many forms of dance with companies as far away as Los Angeles. Upon graduation in 1957, he enrolled in Romar Beauty College in Marysville, California, and became a licensed cosmetologist in May, 1959. After graduation, Louie worked briefly in South Shore Lake Tahoe as a beautician. He then returned to Chico and was associated with Gage's Beauty Salon in Chico until his partner, the Reverend Michael Benson, and Louie founded The Groomers for Hair in 1976, where he worked until his death. Louie served as President of Butte Affiliate #50 of the California Cosmetologists Association. He later travelled extensively serving a two-year term as the youngest President of the Association from 1971 to 1973. In addition, he chaired numerous state level committees with the CCA and he was the first person inducted in their Hall of Fame. He also held membership in the National Cosmetologists Association. The world has lost a great spiritual soul. Reverend Louie participated in the Chico Christian Science Church, later joining the Chico Church of Religious Science as a Charter Member in 1980. A principled student of the Science of Mind, he became licensed as a practitioner in 1994 and a minister in 2000, receiving ordination in 2007. He was awarded Practitioner of the Year with Religious Science International in 2004. Louie worked as a staff minister at the Chico Church until the creation of the Center for Spiritual Living Greater Chico in 2008 with his partner. He has served Religious Science International and Centers for Spiritual Living as Awards and Protocol Chair for well over ten years. Louie was a monthly contributor to the ICSL Magazine, Creative Thought. Additionally, he published his own booklet of prayer treatments titled Love and Compassion, Daily thoughts on which to meditate. His creativity graced the many church and center conferences with floral arrangements that bespoke of his love for beautiful things. An admired minister, his peers described him as a loving, caring, compassionate individual, whose humor made many people laugh with joy! Louie's verbal ability - he was a man of many words - created an outgoing personality that never knew a stranger! Reverend Gates was an ardent Republican supporter and a Member of Chico State Associates. He also supported the American Cancer Center, worked with Hospice and the Chico Museum. Preceding him in death, in addition to his parents, were his brother, Sherman Gates of Chico and sister (Pat) Lull of Eureka. Survivors are partner Reverend Michael Benson and his brother, Albert Gates of Elk Grove, sisters-in-law, Marilyn Davis of Spring Hill, Florida, and Joanna McCain of Epworth, GA. Louie's soul is on a new journey. His ability to laugh with life, love of people, steadfast practice of the principles of the Science of Mind, and his many creative endeavors shall be missed by his family, peers and friends. A memorial service is being held Monday, October 28 at 6:30 p.m., at Manzanita Place (Elks Lodge) at 1705 Manzanita Avenue in Chico. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Center for Spiritual Living Greater Chico, 40 Constitution Drive, Suite E, Chico, CA 95973.
Published in Chico Enterprise-Record on Oct. 24, 2013