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Philip Custer Gates
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Birth: Jun. 20, 1924
Death: Sep. 28, 2007

Philip "Phil" Custer Gates, 83, passed away with his family by his side on Monday, September 17, 2007. Born to Charles "C. B." Bernard and Harriet Hostetter Gates on June 20, 1924 in Charleston, WV, he has been a lifelong resident of Fort Pierce.

Mr. Gates attended St. Lucie County public grade schools and graduated from Culver Military Academy in 1942. He entered the US Army as a 1st Calvary Division Officer and participated in the defense of Australia and the Campaigns of New Guinea and the Philippines. Mr. Gates was discharged in 1945 arriving home on Christmas Day.

He married Barbara Ann Green in December 1948.

He graduated with a Bachelors of Agriculture Degree from the University of Florida in 1949 and returned to manage the Family's citrus holdings. Phil was the Owner and Operator of Indian Harbor Citrus and Kanawha Groves.

He served the Citrus industry as President of Fort Pierce Growers Association, President of Indian Harbor Citrus, Inc., President and Chairman of the Indian River Citrus League, Indian River Citrus League Legends of the River, Chairman Growers Administrative Committee, Chairman of the Citrus Administrative Committee, Director Florida Citrus Mutual, President Florigold Growers, President Seald Sweet Growers, Chairman Indian River Grapefruit Committee, President Fort Pierce Farms, and Chairman of St. Lucie County Soil and Water Conservation District.

Mr. Gates was also actively involved in his local community as a volunteer and philanthropist. He was President of St. Lucie County Chamber of Commerce, Chairman of Lawnwood Regional Medical Center, Chairman of Fort Pierce Memorial Hospital, Chairman of Fort Pierce Memorial Basil King Scholarship Fund, President of the United Fund of St. Lucie County, Vestry member of St. Andrew's Episcopal Church, Director of Sun Trust, Director of Fort Pierce Rotary Club, Treasurer of St. Lucie County Welfare Association, Charter member of Pelican Yacht Club.

"I always felt it was important for growers and citizens to get involved in the decision-making process. I tried to stay active in as many industry organizations as possible. That way, you can affect positive change." As quoted by Mr. Gates in The Florida Growers Magazine.

Survivors include his wife of 59 years, Barbara Green Gates of Fort Pierce; sons, Philip C. "Flip" Gates, Jr. and his wife, Sonja of Fort Pierce, John Koplin Gates and his wife, Laura of Lakeland and David Shalor Gates, and his wife, Diane of St. Lucie Village; daughter, Harriet G. Kretschmer, and her husband, Mike of Jupiter; seven grandchildren, Philip C. Gates III, Kristin Murray, Carly Gates, Mira Garwood, Marina Baldassari, Jesse Gates and Dana Gates; seven great-grandchildren, Kaitlin, Megan, Mattson, Harrison, Presley, Shalor and Meric; and sister-in-law, Kathryn H. Gates.

In addition to his parents, Phil was preceded in death by his brother, Charles Bernard Gates, Jr.

Family will receive friends on Friday, Sept. 21, 2007 from 5:00 until 7:00 p.m. at Saint Andrew's Episcopal Church. A Holy Eucharist Service will be celebrated on Saturday, Sept. 22, 2007 at 10:00 a.m. at Saint Andrew's. Burial will follow at Hillcrest Memorial Gardens.

Friends who wish may contribute to Saint Andrew's Episcopal Church Memorial Fund, 210 S Indian River Dr., Fort Pierce, FL 34950 or Treasure Coast Hospices, 2500 Virginia Avenue, Suite 202, Fort Pierce, FL 34981.

Arrangements are by Yates Funeral Home, Fort Pierce.

Published in the TC Palm on 9/19/2007 
Hillcrest Memorial Gardens
Fort Pierce
St. Lucie County
Florida, USA
Created by: Shirley Bybee
Record added: Sep 19, 2007
Find A Grave Memorial# 21650262
Philip Custer Gates
Added by: Ken & Nancy
Philip Custer Gates
Cemetery Photo
Added by: Tom
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- Vera Mikell Sodek
 Added: Jan. 18, 2008

- Shirley Bybee
 Added: Sep. 19, 2007

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