James Sargeant Bates, 78, Was Veteran, Contractor

James Sargeant Bates died on October 25 at the Rehabilitation Hospital of the Cape and Islands in Sandwich after a brief illness. He was 78.

He was born in North Attleboro on Nov. 7, 1924. As a young man he was an avid runner and won a number of medals for competing in marathon races. He was a member of the North Attleboro High School class of 1943 and enlisted in the Army following graduation. He served in the 54th armored infantry battalion as an antitank crewman and participated in battles in Northern Africa, Germany, France and in the invasion of Anzio. Mr. Bates won a number of combat awards and was honorably discharged in 1945.

Following his discharge from the service, Mr. Bates moved back to North Attleboro and worked in his family's business, Bates Lace Works. He owned and operated this business until 1968 when he moved his family to South Yarmouth on Cape Cod. He then opened Bates Realty and was active in the real estate market on the Cape until 1978. During this time period, he developed an interest in building and selling homes and studied and received his contractor's license before moving to Martha's Vineyard in 1978. He was a highly regarded builder on the Vineyard until his retirement in 1988 when he and his wife returned to the Cape and moved to Dennis.

Following retirement, he continued his involvement with the Bass River Yacht Club where he had been a member for 30 years and served on the Board of Governors. Mr. and Mrs. Bates then moved to Naples, Fla., for the winters, where he was an active member of the board of directors at The Pines in Naples until his death. He loved traveling, boating, fishing and gardening.

He is survived by his wife, Jeanne Franklin Bates; two children, son, Robert J. Bates of Dennis and daughter, Judith J. Bates of Falmouth; one sister, Margaret, of Venice, Fla.; two brothers, Alvin Bates of North Carolina and Gordon Bates of Edgartown; three grandchildren, Ryan Bates of Vermont and Katie and Molly Bates of Dennis.

A memorial service will be held on Friday, Oct. 31, at 10:30 a.m. at St. David's Episcopal Church in South Yarmouth followed by a service of interment at 2:30 p.m. at the Plainville Cemetery, West Beacon street in Plainville.

In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be sent to the First Baptist Church, Park street, North Attleboro, MA 02760 or to St. David's Episcopal Church, Old Main street, South Yarmouth, MA 02664.