Wayne Cates, the Alaskan Mountain Man passed early Saturday morning. He was 61 years old. Wayne was born in Anchorage, Alaska to Grace and Dr. Vernon Cates and lived here all of his life. He married his West Anchorage High School sweetheart, Patty Cates and they savored every moment together. Wayne proudly served his country in the Air National Guard, was a staunch conservative and was dedicated to nurturing conservative beliefs in his family. He lived a life of exploration in the air, on land and sea, was an accomplished pilot, a pioneer to summit Mount McKinley with two assents in one climb, topped Huascaran, Machu Pichou, and multiple other peaks in North and South America. He was a member of Alaska Mountain Search and Rescue group, he hiked the Gobi Desert and found his greatest peace on the water with his family and friends. Wayne was a successful bar and restaurateur in locations on the West coast and Hawaii as well as Anchorage during the roaring 70s Pipeline Days, was a brilliant tax accountant and operator of a public water utility. All aspects of life were important to Wayne, but he treasured most his family. He felt a sacred obligation to honor his heritage and to pass on to his descendants the importance of family, hard work, honesty, integrity and country. He lived the life of a hundred men. He is painfully missed.
A memorial service honoring this extraordinary life will be held Saturday, July 28 at 2:00 at the Hotel Captain Cook followed by a graveside service with military honors in the Pioneer section of the Downtown Anchorage Cemetery and a celebration of life at Pizza Olympia on Spenard Road. Wayne is survived by his adoring wife, Patty; his loving son Reagan Arnold Cates; his devoted daughter Hayley Rose Cates; stepdaughters Alice S. Hurn, Shannon Hazzard; stepsons Brian A. Hurn, Jason and Jeremy Johnson; his mother Grace Cates; brother and sister in law J.C and Lana Cates; sisters and brothers-in-law Cathy and Jimmy Jackson, and Carolyn and Bob Neumann, as well as several nieces, nephews, cousins, extended family members and many very dear friends. In addition to flowers, which Wayne loved, please donate to the most fiscally and socially conservative candidate of your choice.
Published in Alaska Dispatch News from July 26 to July 28, 2012