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Yates Sr., Daniel Gillespie - Charlotte  
Daniel Gillespie Yates Sr., 86, of Charlotte, passed away Saturday, Nov. 29, 2014. Dan was born in Greensboro on Dec. 15, 1927, the sixth child of Louise D. Colhoun and Charles Gillespie Yates Sr. The Yates family goes back many generations to Charles Green Yates, one of the founders and first mayor in 1857. He was also an elder and very active in First Presbyterian Church. Charles gave the church its first bell in 1875. It is still there today. Dan graduated from Greensboro Senior High (now Grimsley) in 1945. He played football and the highlight of his four years was winning the conference championship. He enlisted in the Navy and served in the Pacific on the USS Rockbridge and the USS Fabius. They were involved in the testing of the first atomic bombs. Upon being discharged, he enrolled in Guilford College and graduated with the class of 1950. He began his business career as a salesman for General Foods. In 1952 his brother, Charles Gillespie Yates Jr. suggested they go into business together establishing the Yates Wilbert Vault Co., which is now owned by his two sons. During Dan's career, he became an officer in several related organizations. He was elected to the National Board of Directors of Wilbert Inc. in Forest Park, Ill., and remained until his retirement in 1998. In 1953 Dan married Barbara J. Hovis in Greensboro. They had dated since 1951. Barbara's friend Betty Sue Alexander Grant arranged their first date. They were the fifth couple Betty Sue had arranged the first date for and led to marriage. In 1983 Dan and Barbara built their first cottage on a canal in Ocean Isle Beach. It was ideal to have one's boat docked at the back door, so easy to run out to fish an hour or so. They still have their second house on a canal there but no longer make fishing trips unless with another captain at the helm. Dan and Barbara moved to Southminster Retirement Community in 2009. Dan is survived by his wife, Barbara H. Yates; his daughter Laura Y. Smith (J.P. III "Chip"); sons, Daniel Gillespie Yates Jr. and Robert B. Yates (Angela). He is survived by his grandchildren Kiristin "Kristy" McConnell (Robert "Rob"), Andrew Yates Smith, Zachary R. Yates (Ashley), Lauren Y. Wenger (Gregory J. "Greg") C. Landen Yates, Bryce C. Yates, Braedon L. Yates; as well as 11 nieces and nephews. Also surviving are five great-grandchildren, Robert Hudson McConnell, Tinley R. Yates, Gregory John Wenger Jr., Taylor Grace Wenger and Patrick Wenger. Dan was preceded in death by all his siblings and in-laws, Charles G. Yates Jr. (Les) of Charlotte, Elizabeth "Bibby" Y. King (Walter), Margaret "Peggy" Brown (Roy) of Greensboro, Nancy Y. McAmis (John "John Daddy") of Knoxville, Tenn., and Jean Y. Fuquay (Richard "Dick") of Orange City, Fla. He is also preceded in death by his daughter-in-law, Nancy L. Yates, as well as his grandson, Matthew J. "Matt" Smith, both of whom died far too early, and his constant companion, Bonnie Jean, a Corgi who stayed with him faithfully. A memorial service will be held at 2 p.m. Wednesday, Dec. 3, at Southminster in the Great Room. A private family committal service will be held at Sharon Memorial Park. The family would like to thank the caring staff of Ivy Lane, including Lisa, for the love and care they gave Dan. In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to Southminster Foundation, 8919 Park Road, Charlotte, NC 28210 or the Wilbert Foundation, 2913 Gardner Road, Broadview, IL 60155 or Hospice & Palliative Care, 1420 E. Seventh St., Charlotte, NC 28204.
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Published in The Brunswick Beacon from Dec. 4 to Dec. 10, 2014
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