Charles R. Yates
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Charles R. Yates, born to Presley Daniel Yates and Julia Richardson Yates on September 9, 1913, Charles Richardson Yates, "Charlie" to his friends, was a noted amateur golfer, businessman, and civic leader in Atlanta. Mr. Yates was beloved for his generosity of spirit, grace, humor, humility, and integrity. A graduate of Boys' High School in Atlanta, Mr. Yates learned to play golf at the Atlanta Athletic Club's East Lake Golf Course and was mentored by legendary golfer Robert Tyre "Bobby" Jones Jr. He enjoyed a distinguished amateur career, winning the Georgia Amateur in 1931 and 1932, the NCAA individual title in 1934 (while an honor student at Georgia Tech), and the Western Amateur in 1935. He played on two Walker Cup Teams (1936 and 1938), captained the 1953 team, and was named honorary captain in 1985. He was the five-time low amateur at the Masters. Mr. Yates' most significant victory came at the 1938 British Amateur at Troon, Scotland. Writing about the win, Atlanta Constitution editor Ralph McGill described Yates' "infectious good humor and complete indifference to pressure" that "won the hearts of the Scots." Three weeks after winning the British Amateur, Mr. Yates' is remembered for his grace in defeat in the Walker Cup Matches. The United States lost the Walker Cup for the first time since its inception in 1922. At the victory ceremony, Mr. Yates sung an old Scottish song, "A Wee Deoch and Doris," to the delight of the crowd. James Reston of The New York Times recalled that it "was one of the memorable moments of my sporting days." Mr. Yates' competitive golf career, with the exception of several appearances at the Masters, ended with the start of World War II. After being drafted into the Army in 1941, Mr. Yates secured a transfer to the Navy in an effort to serve his country in combat. He served for thirty months as a lieutenant on the destroyer USS Mayo, which was struck by enemy fire in the invasion of Italy. While the ship was being repaired, Mr. Yates married his "bride" Dorothy Malone on May 20, 1944, beginning a lifetime partnership. Their devotion for each other was evident in their sixty-one years of marriage. Whenever anyone commented to Mr. Yates upon the special nature of this relationship, he would always explain that he had "outmarried himself." Mr. and Mrs. Yates had four children, all of whom live in Atlanta, and five grandchildren. Mr. Yates had a long and successful career in business working with the First National Bank of Atlanta (1935-1947), then with Joshua L. Baily & Co. (1947-1960), and finally with Seaboard Coast Line and Louisville and Nashville Railroads (1960-1973). Mr. Yates retired early from business at age sixty at the request of former Mayor Ivan Allen Jr. who asked him to accept the position of president of the Atlanta Arts Alliance (now the Woodruff Arts Center). While in that position from 1973 to 1983, Mr. Yates led the effort to raise $20 million to build the High Museum of Art, increased the Alliance's endowment, and brought his close friend Robert Shaw to Atlanta to serve as the symphony's musical director and conductor. Mr. Yates' always said that his greatest pleasure from those years came from watching school children leave their yellow buses to enter the building to learn about the arts. Throughout his life, Mr. Yates was deeply involved in wide-ranging civic causes. As Atlanta-Journal Constitution sportswriter Furman Bisher once noted, "Look at almost any kind of uplifting committee in Atlanta and chances are you'll find Charlie Yates' name on it." Mr. Yates served as president of the Metro Atlanta YMCA, president of the Atlanta Symphony, co-chairman of the Georgia Tech Centennial Campaign, president and life trustee of the Georgia Tech Foundation, USO regional chairman, and Director of the American Council For the Arts, among other positions. Mr. Yates received numerous honors for his civic contributions including the Distinguished Service Award from Georgia Tech; 11 Alive Community Service Governor's Award; an honorary doctorate degree from Emory University; the Brotherhood Award from the Georgia Region of the National Conference of Christian and Jews; the Heroes, Saints, and Legends Award from Wesley Woods, to name a few. For his contributions to the game of golf and in specific recognition of his "distinguished sportsmanship." Mr. Yates was given the United States Golf Association's Bob Jones Award in 1980, which he described as the most meaningful honor in golf that he could have received. Mr. Yates dedicated his life to service. In the 1990s, he supported Tom Cousins' efforts to rebuild East Lake. The public course in the neighborhood opened in 1998 and was named the Charlie Yates Golf Course. It was created for the children of East Lake to share the lessons that influenced so much of Mr. Yates' life-community, country, family, and friends. It is a fitting and lasting tribute to a life well lived. Mr. Yates is survived by his wife Dorothy, their four children and their families: Dorothy Yates Kirkley and John Kirkley; Charlie Yates Jr., Mary Yates, Charlie Yates III, and Sarah Yates; Comer Yates, Sally Yates, Kelley Yates, and Quill Yates; Sarah Yates Southerland and David Southerland. Other survivors include his brother P. Dan Yates and wife, Margaret and his sister, Frances Greene. A visitation with the family will be held at St. Dunstan's Episcopal Church on Wednesday, October 19, 2005, from 5:30 to 7:30. The memorial service will be held at All Saints' Episcopal Church at 11 a.m. on Thursday, October 20, 2005. In lieu of flowers, contributions can be made to Camp Twin Lakes, the East Lake Community Foundation, the St. Dunstan's Episcopal Church Outreach Program, or Young Audiences of Atlanta. Arrangements by H.M. Patterson and Son, Spring Hill, Atlanta (404) 876-1022

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Published in Atlanta Journal-Constitution on Oct. 18, 2005.
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Memories & Condolences
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15 entries
November 29, 2005
My heartfelt sympathy to the Yates family and to Dan Yates. I have so much appreciation for all that Charlie did for the arts in Atlanta, and for golf. Dan, thank you so much for always being there for the Goree family. My God bless the Yates family and keep your surrounded by His Love.
Winnie Goree
November 6, 2005
My condolences to the family of a great man in Atlanta history, particularly to son Comer, with whom it was a pleasure attending Leadership Atlanta.
Emily Sanders
October 25, 2005
I regret that I only learned of Mr. Yates' death on 10/25/05. Along with his loving family the State of Georgia and his numerous friends and associates will miss him and his numerous contributions greatly. My deepest sympathy to his daughter, Dorothy, and his son and daughter-in-law, Comer and Sally.
Joel Feldman
October 21, 2005
I was truly saddened when I belatedly learned of Mr. Yates' passing. I sincerely offer my sympathy to Dorothy and all the family members. Although I only had the honor of meeting Charlie once at the old Capital City Country Club in the early '60s, his warm, gracious demeanor made a lasting impression on my life. I feel that the world has truly lost one of the best,
Gerald A. Yates
October 21, 2005
I was deeply saddened to learn of Charlie Yates' passing. He was a true gentleman who loved his city and contributed greatly to its progress. His many friends around the world mourn his passing and our state has lost one of its most distinguished citizens. Deepest sympathy to Mrs. Yates, Charlie, Comer and all the members of his family.
Peter Banks
October 20, 2005
I extend most sincere condolences in the passing of one of the greats. His accomplishments and contributions to the community/world has been incredible. I extend my best wishes and warmest expressions of comfort to the Yates Family.
Robert Bondi
October 19, 2005
I feel I knew you well although we never met as Dad talked about you as a brother.You can now play a round in heaven and chat about the good old days.Thanks to Brians son Iain we have many photos of your matches.Condolences to all the family from the Mcleans in Australia
IAIN Mclean
October 19, 2005
Mrs. Yates and family, may God grant you peace during this most difficult time. Some of my most cherished memories as Caddy Master at The Augusta National always involved Mr Yates, and will remain
in my heart forever.With sincere sympathy, Freddie Bennett and Family
Freddie &Lillian Bennett
October 19, 2005
My life will be forever blessed by having the privilege to know such a wonderful man. He will be missed terribly but always remembered with warm feelings that bring a smile to my heart. My deepest sympathies and heartfelt prayers go to all the family - especially Mrs. Dorothy Yates, Mr Charles Yates, Mr. P. Dan Yates and Mr. Danny Yates. May God keep you in his loving comfort and care.
Alisa Van Dorn
October 19, 2005
Golf has lost one of its true statesmen. The sight of Charlie Yates around a golf course always brought a smile. He was a pleasure to play with.
john garrison
October 18, 2005
It was a great honor and pleasure to have been a small part in Mr.Yates life, We enjoyed caring for him until his demise. Our heart felt sympathy go out to Mrs.Yate and the family, Yate family may your memories of your loveone be cherished and your heart be comforted.
Johnny,Joy(Cheryl) & The Daniel Family
October 18, 2005
my condolences to the family, especially to you, Dan. Charlie and you were very kind to me during my days of covering the Masters.
robert eubanks
October 18, 2005
Onbehalf of the Chief Justice's Commission on Professionalism, I extend deepest sypathy to the Yates family. You have my personal condolences as well. Charlie Yates' memory shines as a beacon of humanity, integrity, and sportmanship. We were blessed to have him in our midst.
Sally Lockwood
October 18, 2005
Deepest sympathy to Dorothy and the family. it was an honer to have beeen associated with Charley in the textile industry for so many years. His was a life of service and friends galore.
Frederick Dent
October 18, 2005
My condolences go out to you family as you reflect on the memories that span several decades.
Tracey Willis
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