Surrounded by his loving family James Lawrence "Doc" Yates Jr. of Palmyra, Va., peacefully passed away at the University of Virginia Medical Center on Thursday, January 2, 2020. Born to James L. Sr. and Elizabeth Garland Yates of Keswick, Va., on June 24, 1949, he grew up in the Cismont area and attended the local segregated elementary schools until 1963 when he and others of the now historically recognized "Albemarle 26" desegregated the Albemarle County school system. After graduating from Albemarle High School, Doc began a career with UVA Medical, becoming a Nurse and retired in 2012 after 44 years of loyal service. Within that period, he also served in the United States Army Reserves, acheiving the rank of Sergeant First Class and retired after 25 years of honorable service. A lifelong member of the Zion Hill Baptist, Doc sang in the teen group called the "Inspirations" and in adulthood served as Church Treasurer and a faithful Trustee for over 25 years. He leaves cherished memories to his partner of 23 years, Linda Austin; two sons, James L. Yates (Muhammad) III (Stephanie) of Raleigh, N.C., and Jeremy C. Yates (Elizabeth) of Madison, Wisc.; daughter, Samara L. Johnson of Virginia Beach, Va.; two sisters, Jane and Gertrude Yates of Keswick, Va.; two brothers, Daniel Yates (Kim Bowles) of Louisa, Va., and Edward Early II of Charlottesville, Va.; six grandchildren; a great-granddaughter, godson, aunts, uncles and a host of other relatives and friends. Visitations will be held at Zion Hill Baptist Church, 802 Zion Hill Road, (P.O. Box 213) Keswick, Va., on Friday, January 10, from 5 to p.m. and on Saturday, January 11, 2020, from 10 AM 12 PM and the Homegoing Service at Noon. Arrangements are entrusted with D.D. Watson Mortician, Inc., Fork Union, VA. Condolences may be offered to the family at www.ddwatsonforkunion.com.
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