Bruce Monroe Gates
1933 - 2021
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Bruce Monroe Gates

Born: November 30, 1933

Died: January 24, 2021

Bruce Monroe Gates, age 87, passed peacefully at the home of his daughter, Connie Hildreth in New Kent, VA, on January 24, 2021 from Congestive Heart Failure. Born on November 30, 1933, he was the son of the late Donald and Dorothy Johnson Gates.

Bruce, who was born and raised in Williams Bay, Wisconsin, graduated from Williams Bay High School and the University of Wisconsin at Milwaukee. From a young age Bruce had been a Scouting enthusiast, becoming a Boy Scout, Eagle Scout and member of the Order of the Arrow; he enjoyed the organization and admired what it stood for so much that within a few years of graduation from U of WI, Bruce accepted a position as a District Executive with the Boy Scouts of America in LaFayette, Indiana, where he met his wife, Dorothy. Five years later accepted a position in LaGrange, IL at the West Suburban Council, where he spent the remaining 29 years of his career as a District Executive and as Camp Director at both Camp Delavan and Camp Mach-kin-O-Siew in Northern Wisconsin. He and Dorothy loved the North Woods so much that they purchased land and built their retirement home in Land O'Lakes Wisconsin, on Lac Vieux Desert. They lived there for 25 years, where they spent much of their time hiking, biking, cross-country skiing, canoeing, and camping all over WI, MN, and MI. During retirement Bruce served as Outreach and New Member Coordinator for their church, Prince of Peace Lutheran Church, in Eagle River, WI. He brought his many years of knowledge to work as a volunteer for the area Boy Scout troops as well. His love of and interest in Native American culture led him to take part in several archaeological digs in the Midwest over the years. In 2010 he received his Master's Degree in Humanities from California State University, where he wrote his thesis titled Big Foot: Potawatomi Village Leader: The Myth and the Man, which was published and can be found in the Chicago History Museum, the Newberry Library, and the Wisconsin Historical Society. Bruce lived his life in service to others, and most loved spending time in nature with his beloved family and dogs.

Bruce was preceded in death by his father and mother, Donald M. and Dorothy A. Gates; mother-in-law Ethel Kerkhoff of Phelps, WI; two brothers, Boyd and Brian Gates, of Williams Bay, WI; sisters-in-law Barbara Gates and Kathy Gates; niece, Corri Gates. He is survived by his wife Dorothy Marie Gates of Williamsburg, VA; two daughters, Constance (Steve) Hildreth of New Kent, VA, and Karla (Jerry) Janowski of Clinton, WI; one son, Bruce A.(Lynda) Gates of Orange Park, FL; two brothers, Robert Gates of WMS Bay, WI, and William Gates of Clifton Park, NY; sister-in-law Nancy Gates of WMS Bay, WI; grandchildren, Brad (Rachael) Amundsen of Mequon, WI, Matt (Joy) Amundsen of Placida, FL, Angie Gates of Jacksonville, FL , David Gates of Willowbrook, IL, Robert Gates of Middleburg, FL, Cole Stablein of Hampton, VA, Cara Stablein of Anchorage, AK, Sarah (Chad) Hildreth of Chicago, IL, Zach (Jacqueline) Hildreth of Brambleton, VA, Chris Hildreth of Arlington, VA, Jerry (Amy) Janowski III of Kenosha, WI, Tim Janowski of Seattle, WA and Sarah (James) Dunn of Waynesboro, PA ; great-grandchildren, Madelyn Amundsen, Nora Amundsen, Clint Amundsen, Bradley Gates, Chloe Janowski, and Jimmy Dunn. He is also survived by loving nieces, nephews and a host of long-time friends.

A Celebration of Life and Internment Service will be held in Williams Bay, WI at a later date. Gifts in his memory can be made to the National Parks Conservation Association at www.secure.npca.org (Notification address for website: Dorothy Gates, 5500 Williamsburg Landing Dr., Apt 160, Williamsburg, VA 23185), or to Prince of Peace Lutheran Church, 5030 WI-70, Eagle River, WI 54521.


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Published in Suburban Life Publications on Feb. 18, 2021.
Memories & Condolences
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3 entries
February 6, 2021
I am sorry to hear of Bruce Gates death. I worked for him at camp MKOS. He served as a mentor for me, he truly set the example for scouting.
Robert Chevas
February 6, 2021
Sorry to hear about Bruce Gates passing. I used to work for him at Camp Mach-kin-o-siew in Elcho, WI. We last saw him at MKOS in 2017 just by chance. We will miss him.
Robert B Masek
February 6, 2021
I am saddened to hear of the passing of Mr Gates. I had the pleasure of working with him for several years at MKOS. His impact on me cannot be over stated. We were a cantankerous bunch of young men with whom he managed with a loving hand. His commitment to Scouting has informed my life to this day. Please accept my sincere condolences and thank you for sharing him with me. Greg
Greg Tessier
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