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Judy Ann Bates

Jun 17, 2014 - Staff

Judy Ann Bates died Sunday, June 8, 2014, at her home in Fremont County. She was 69 years old.

A memorial service for friends and family will be at 1 p.m. Sunday, Aug. 17, at 18 Rogers Lane in Riverton. A potluck barbecue dinner and celebration will follow. Graveside services will be Monday, Aug. 18, at Mountain View Cemetery.

Judy Ann Bates was born Sept. 24, 1944, in San Mateo, Calif., while her father, Gordon "Bing" Wallace Bates, was serving in the U.S. Navy during World War II. Soon after her birth, her mother, Ruby Jean (Clevenger) Bates, took her and her brother, Billy, by train back to Edgerton to wait for the war's end.

She lived in Edgerton and attended elementary school in Midwest. When she was 12, her family moved to Newcastle where she attended junior high and high school. She was a member of Job's Daughters, worked briefly for a local funeral director and as a nursing assistant in Newcastle. She spent her senior year in Laramie, graduating in 1962.

On March 9, 1963, she was married Riverton resident Gene A. Wocicki in Newcastle. They had three children: Tami Danette Wocicki, Steven Gene Wocicki and Scot Lee Wocicki.

The couple lived in Newcastle, Casper and Gillette during their first 13 years of marriage.

From 1972 to 1978, Mrs. Bates was the president of the Wyoming Association of Retarded Citizens, and from 1973 to 1975, she worked at B&K Saddlery in Gillette. The family then moved to a ranch on Gooseberry Creek between Worland and Meteetsee, then to Worland and finally Basin where they divorced in 1981.

Mrs. Bates had a variety of jobs in the Basin and Greybull area, including stockyard auction worker, veterinary assistant, convenience store manager and bartender. In 1989, she moved with her new husband, Kenneth "Butch" Moore, to Missoula, Mont., Rapid City, S.D., and then to Battle Mountain, Nev., where she opened her first Jud's Trading Post. She returned to Wyoming in 1997 and settled in Riverton to be near her daughter, Tami.

In Riverton she started another incarnation of Jud's Trading Post and a whole new venture: JB Taxi. Her family said the two businesses saved tons of reusable items from the local landfill and countless people an expensive Saturday night in jail.

She was baptized Methodist and confirmed Episcopalian, and her family said she was active in several local congregations when the Holy Spirit moved her.

She also maintained a yard, garden and home on 2.5 acres with two horses and many chickens, dogs and cats. Her family said her affinity for antiques and collectables could be attested to by anyone who ever set foot in her store or home. Her love for beautiful things and her compassion for children and animals was dwarfed only by her deep love of friends and family.

Her family said she loved to garden, craft, sew, cook, play cards with friends on Fridays, and watch the Broncos and professional bull riding on television.

She is survived by too many dear friends to mention; friend and former husband Gene Wocicki; sons Steve Wocicki of Shoshoni and Scot and his wife Frances Wocicki of Berkeley, Calif.; brother Billy Bates of Laughlin, Nev., and his former wife Sharon; nieces and nephews Shea, Shana and Shad Bates; grandchildren Amanda Mackay of Washington and Shane Wocicki of Cowley; and cousins Bob Clevenger of Green River and Jack Clevenger of Gillette.

She was preceded in death by her parents, Bing and Ruby Jean Bates, and her daughter, Tami Wocicki.

Memorial donations may be made to Paws for Life Animal League in care of Davis Funeral Home, 2203 W. Main St., Riverton, WY 82501.

Arrangements are under the direction of Davis Funeral Home of Riverton. Online condolences may be left at www.thedavisfuneralhome.com.

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