God has blessed us with 19 children. We’re not a perfect family! We have the same struggles that other families have, only multiplied! But in spite of extra laundry, extra chores, extra diapers, and extra noise; we have an extra measure of laughter, an endless supply of fellowship, and an added dose of faith to get us through it all! We are aware that any successes we have experienced in our family are a result of the culmination of help from many others God has brought in our lives. From relatives, to preachers, to friends whose examples we’ve tried to follow, we have received much help and encouragement along the way. We fail often. We’re humbled more often than we’d like to be, and we find that we’re often wrong more than we are right. However, the children’s song He’s Still Working on Me to Make Me What I Ought to Be teaches us to set our eyes on Him, rather than on ourselves and our accomplishment.
GIL AND KELLY JO BATES
ANNIVERSARY: DECEMBER 19, 1987
KELLY JO’S BIRTHDAY
Gil & Kelly Jo met at Anderson University in Anderson, SC. They served on a ministry team together, and Kelly Jo was also the lab assistant for Gil’s chemistry class. Gil conveniently needed some tutoring for that class, and there was more chemistry in the air than in the books! They both transferred to Carson Newman University in Jefferson City, TN, where Gil proposed to Kelly. They have had 19 wonderful kids (no twins) and 4 miscarried babies who are waiting to meet them in Heaven. They have enjoyed the most blessed life anyone could imagine having! Gil currently pastors Bible Baptist Church of East Tennessee and owns a family tree company called Bates Tree Service.
- Gil & Kelly thought they would only have two kids, at the most, and only after about 5 years of marriage!
- Gil won the 1983 SC State Championship and was voted Most Outstanding Wrestler
- Kelly won the 1984 SC NYSC Science Award; her favorite subjects were Biology, Chemistry, and Calculus.
- Gil’s favorite verse: 1 Corinthians 15:58
- Kelly’s favorite food: Japanese
- Gil’s favorite movie: Flywheel
- Kelly’s favorite way to handle stress: hum hymns softly
ZACH AND WHITNEY BATES –
ANNIVERSARY: DECEMBER 14, 2013
Zach met Whitney (Perkins) at the local Sonic, and I think it was love at first sight. They quickly became best friends and have started their own little family, giving birth to Bradley in October, 2014, and Kaci in June 2016. Zach is an Anderson County sheriff’s deputy. Zach is not only a walking encyclopedia of knowledge, but he always offers us very sound Biblical counsel and direction. Whitney has added such a sweet touch to our family; everyone that visits falls in love with her because of her super sensitive and thoughtful personality. It’s such a blessing to see what loving parents they have become!
- Zach was the youngest elected commissioner in Tennessee
- Whitney received her degree in medical billing and coding and medical insurance.
- Zach’s favorite verse: Proverbs 22:1
- Whitney’s favorite hymn: “What a Friend We Have in Jesus”
- Zach’s favorite subject: History
- Whitney’s favorite restaurant: The Chop House
BIRTHDAY: OCTOBER 29
As the first grandchild, Bradley has added a new dynamic to our family. He has such an adorable smile that many labeled him the “Gerber baby”. He has such a joyful personality.
Fun Fact: Bradley’s middle name, Gilvin, has been passed down through at least 5 generations. It means “Trusted.”
BIRTHDAY: JUNE 20
We were thrilled to welcome Kaci Lynn, our fourth grandchild, to the family. She’s already adored, and as usual, we can never get enough time to hold her, since there is a long line of aunts and uncles waiting to share the love.
Fun Fact: Kaci’s middle name is in honor of her grandmother, Lynn Perkins
BRANDON AND MICHAEL KEILEN
ANNIVERSARY: AUGUST 15, 2015
Michael and Brandon met at a homeschool conference, and you can read their touching love story by clicking HERE. Michael recently completed her degree from Roane State Community College. She enjoys working as a nanny and creating beautiful hand sewn dresses for young girls. Michael leaves a trail of friends everywhere she goes. Brandon completed his 4 year ministry degree from Bible College in November, 2014. He enjoys art, drawing, and videography. Brandon has a quiet, thoughtful personality, and he has added a huge smile to Michael’s countenance, and to our family.
- Michael started sewing dresses for her siblings when she was 12
- Brandon played the euphonium in a brass quintet for a music competition
- Michael’s favorite book: Lords of the Earth
- Brandon’s favorite colors: Green and Brown
- Michael’s favorite hymn: Nearer My God to Thee
- Brandon’s favorite Bible chapter: John 15
CHAD AND ERIN PAINE –
ANNIVERSARY: NOVEMBER 2, 2013
Erin met Chad at a Valentine’s Banquet and was instantly smitten. Erin & Chad have a precious baby boy, Carson, and are soon expecting a little girl, Brooklyn Elise. She graduated from Crown College of the Bible in May of 2014 with magna cum laude honors, earning a bachelor’s degree in music ministry. She teaches piano lessons and is actively involved in the music ministry of Temple Baptist Church. Erin has recorded three CDs: Merciful and Mighty, Down Home Gospel, and Comfort and Joy. She is currently working on completing a lullaby CD, to be released in Fall of 2016. Erin is the family member that keeps us enthused about striving to go further in our Christian walk, always looking for ways to minister. Her dedication and spiritual discernment is an inspiration to us all! Chad works for a metal company in Oak Ridge. He has a servant spirit and never visits us without performing some helpful project. He is humble, thoughtful, fun, and makes everyone feel special. You can follow their website by clicking HERE.
- Erin can play the piano backwards or blindfolded
- Chad loves restoration projects
- Erin’s favorite holiday: Christmas
- Chad’s favorite verses: Psalm 121: 1-2
- Erin’s favorite hobby: cooking
- Chad’s favorite activity: Going on dates with Erin!
BIRTHDAY – MAY 14
Carson laughs if you even look in his direction! He loves giving kisses and hugs, and we love the attention! He is one of the most contented little fellows you’ll ever see.
Fun fact: Carson is the fourth generation to carry the name: Charles Stephen Paine.
BIRTHDAY – COMING SOON
LAWSON BATES –
BIRTHDAY: JULY 27
Lawson is currently working on releasing his second solo album and will be scheduling his first tour fall of 2016. He manages his own mowing service company, Lawson’s Lawncare. Lawson has a humorous, comedian side that keeps us in stitches, but he is also full of wise cautions and advice to keep us on the straight and narrow! You can visit his website by clicking HERE.
- Lawson works as a reserve deputy for Anderson County Sheriffs Department.
- Zach was four years old when he began praying for a baby brother, and he announced to us that he had chosen a baby name: Lawson. So Lawson was named by Zach before we even knew we were having a boy.
- Favorite song: Amazing Grace
- Favorite restaurant: Chick-Fil-A
BIRTHDAY: AUGUST 29
Nathan loves preaching and has a huge heart for missions. He looks for every opportunity to encourage others in their faith or to share the plan of salvation. He is usually the one that his siblings run to for advice or encouragement. He is a go-getter and never slows down, whether it’s work or ministry. Nathan is his dad’s right hand man in the family tree service company. He has earned his private pilot license and is currently working on his commercial license.
- Nathan is an EMR and did volunteer work with Medford Fire Department
- Nathan is a reserved deputy sheriff with Anderson County Sheriff Department
- Nathan’s favorite activities: Teaching the Bible and participating in water sports
- Nathan’s favorite movie: Not a Fan
JOHN AND ALYSSA WEBSTER –
ANNIVERSARY: MAY 24, 2014
Alyssa became attracted to John while helping his father, Congressman Daniel Webster, campaign for the 2012 election. They reside in Clermont, Florida with their daughter, Allie Jane. Alyssa is one of the most organized family members; before moving, she was our secretary, family clothes shopper, and a fabulous cook! She’s also loads of fun to spend time with! We certainly miss her, and realize that Florida gained an extra ray of sunshine when she moved! Whenever any of Alyssa’s sisters have free time the first thing that comes to mind is a visit to see her. John works for the Webster’s family air conditioning business. He and Alyssa also clean commercial buildings as a side job. John never visits without repairing some broken appliance or doing some project. John is also an amazing athlete and plays on a church basketball and softball league with his brothers. He has an easy going personality which makes him a great asset to our family!
- Alyssa’s nickname is Bizz
- John competed in a national Bible quiz competition, placing 5th place, and has memorized large portions of Scripture.
- Alyssa’s favorite book: The Count of Monte Cristo
- John’s favorite verse: Romans 12:21
- Alyssa’s favorite food: pizza
- John’s favorite color: Blue
ALLIE JANE WEBSTER
BIRTHDAY – APRIL 11
Allie is our 2nd grand baby, but our first grand daughter, so she added an extra measure of sweetness to the growing extended family. She has a very easy going personality that adds to her charm. Allie is one of those perfect babies that sleeps all night, takes naps, and never complains, so she makes parenting look easy.
Fun facts: Allie’s middle name Jane is in honor of her grandmother. Allie shares birthdays with her Aunt Carlin.
BIRTHDAY: DECEMBER 20
Tori is pursuing her major in education at Crown College of the Bible.
She works part time for the family in order to earn college money and gain skills by helping homeschool her younger siblings. Tori has a very bubbly, outgoing personality, and she has never met a stranger! She keeps our house filled with company, so that we have plenty of fun and fellowship. She loves the violin and often accompanies Erin’s piano music at hospitals and nursing homes. Tori has a heart for sharing Christ with others.
- Tori doesn’t like fancy restaurants or fancy clothes.
- Tori is a people person and hates being alone
- Tori’s favorite songs: As the Deer and In Christ Alone
- Tori’s favorite activity: Anything that involves people, especially outdoor activities like biking, hiking, and riding horses
BIRTHDAY: FEBRUARY 1ST
The name Trace has become synonymous with competition at our house, and he gives his older brothers quite a challenge when he’s included in a game! He enjoys almost any sport or game: basketball, football, ping pong, foosball, horseback riding, cards, or anything active or competitive. He has become the go- to- errand- runner for the family, since most of the older siblings are gone, and as such, he’s an invaluable help! He also is a very important worker on tree jobs with the Bates Tree Service. His personality is fun and spunky, and he’s usually in the middle of all the action.
- Trace Whitfield means “Harvester of the white fields;” this name was chosen to inspire him to be a witness for the Lord.
- Trace is a pro at telling Chuck Norris jokes.
- Trace’s favorite color: Orange for UT Volunteers
- Trace’s favorite activity: Football
BIRTHDAY: APRIL 11TH
Carlin is full of initiative and is a huge motivator for young kids. She leads our church’s character lessons for children on Sunday nights, and has an incredible way of captivating their attention. She began a Bible Club to encourage other young girls to make wise choices, including: daily Bible reading, daily prayer, daily Scripture memory, and passing out 30 tracts each month. She has been a role model for her family and many others! She leads our church’s character lessons for children on Sunday nights, and has an incredible way of captivating their attention. Her enthusiasm is contagious and makes us all feel energized.
- Carlin is a great yodeler!
- Carlin’s favorite verses: Matthew 6:19-21
- Carlin’s favorite food: Mexican & Japanese
BIRTHDAY: AUGUST 4TH
Josie has filled in her older sisters roles, becoming the biggest help in the home and is one of the hardest workers I know. She knows how to direct and organize her younger siblings to capitalize on their cooperation when projects need to be done. Josie is the kind of friend everyone dreams of having. She’s loyal, dependable, and available to lend a hand, give a hug, or just offer an encouraging word. She loves to engage in meaningful conversation, which makes others feel especially close to her. Her quietness may fool you, because she can also be giggly and loads of fun.
- Josie is the only Bates with curly hair
- Josie’s favorite verse: 1 Corinthians 10:31
- Josie’s favorite activity: Running
- Josie’s favorite drink: Coffee
BIRTHDAY: OCTOBER 5TH
Katie never complains and never has an enemy. She is full of spunk and laughter. She loves pranks and always makes us smile. She is quick and witty with sarcastic humor. Katie has become the main babysitter for her nephews, because she has a knack for making little ones happy. One of her favorite pastimes is reading history books and quizzing others in little known history facts. She is also an expert in geography.
- Katie Grace Bates was born on the 5th at 5:55 p.m. Her 3 names have 5 letters each. “5” is the number of grace in the Bible, and her name means “Pure grace.”
- Katie’s favorite movie: Perry Mason
- Katie’s favorite activity: Deer hunting
BIRTHDAY: FEBRUARY 17TH
Jackson amazes us with his tidbits of wisdom. We call him Zach’s twin, since he looks and acts like him. They share the favorite subject of history and are both avid readers. Jackson is almost inseparable from his two younger brothers, and they have earned the nickname “The 3 Musketeers” for their wild and adventurous escapades. Jackson loves building anything and is extremely creative.
- Jackson is a great artist, and especially loves drawing military planes and tanks
- Jackson’s favorite colors: Grey & Blue
- Jackson’s favorite desert: Hot fudge cake
BIRTHDAY: MAY 19TH
Warden is a natural athlete. He’s all boy and is tough as nails. He’s adventurous, fearless, and a little mischievous. He earned the nickname “Tigger,” because he’s full of bounce! He’s a hard worker and is the one his sisters call on to do a task when the older brothers are gone.
- Warden is a great singer
- Warden’s favorite movies: Roy Rogers and old clean westerns
- Warden’s favorite activity: Football
BIRTHDAY: OCTOBER 16TH
Isaiah has a smile that will melt any heart. We say he’s going to be a great catch, because he showers his sisters with compliments. He never goes to bed without giving hugs. He’s tender hearted and lovable. Isaiah is the one that reminds us to pray for each trip before our car leaves the driveway.
- Isaiah is the only Bates that has been airlifted to a hospital.
- Isaiah’s favorite activity: Biking
- Isaiah’s favorite restaurant: Chick Fil A
BIRTHDAY: FEBRUARY 17TH
Addallee means “The Lord is my strength and refuge”. The double letters in her name remind us that God gave her a second chance in life when she was born with complications that caused her breathing and her heart to stop. She has been a blessing from the start and adds joy to our life. She has a thoughtful personality, always thinking of others first. She often gives up her own turns so another sibling can be happy.
- Addallee was the smallest Bates baby, weighing 4 lbs. 13 oz. when she came home from NICU
- Addallee’s favorite activity: coloring
- Addallee’s favorite food: salad
BIRTHDAY: APRIL 28TH
Ellie’s a bubbly little ray of sunshine that loves to give hugs and loves to cuddle up in someone’s lap. She’s quiet and sweet. She’s super sensitive, with such a tender heart. She is always willing to help in any way.
- Ellie Bridget means “Strong light”
- Ellie’s favorite activity: riding horses
- Ellie’s favorite movie: Perry Mason
BIRTHDAY: AUGUST 2ND
Callie Anna Rose is the most adorable, mot innocent looking little angel…but underneath that sweet grin is an outgoing little person that’s not afraid to speak her mind! Two words to describe her are sassy and bossy! She keeps us all on our toes and adds sheer delight to our days!
- Callie is the only Bates with 4 names: Callie-Anna Rose Bates (The Anna Rose part of her name is in honor of a former church member, Rose Ann Brown, whose testimony inspired us all).
- Callie’s favorite desert: cheesecake
- Callie’s favorite activity: swimming
BIRTHDAY: SEPTEMBER 15TH
Judson Wyatt is an absolute doll…dimples, dimples, dimples! When he grins, everyone’s heart melts! He’s got a very calm, sweet personality that makes him adorable and irresistible. He’s very loving and is the center of our world!
- Judson’s name was chosen after meditating on the words of the hymn, I Surrender All, written by Judson Van Deventer. The hymn writer wrote this hymn after facing a decision of whether to pursue a career in art or full time ministry; as he came to his resolve, he penned the words of I Surrender All.”
- Judson’s favorite song: Go Tell It On the Mountain
- Judson’s favorite movie: The Original Curious George
BIRTHDAY: FEBRUARY 1ST
Jeb Colton is a bundle of energy and is fearless! He is a handful, but is too cute to cause a complaint! His smile warms our hearts! Being the baby of the family, he’s certainly the most spoiled!
- The name of our town has changed twice, but the original name was Coal Creek. Jeb Colton means “Beloved friend of Coal Town.” With his loving personality, it won’t be hard for him to befriend those he meets and to share the love of Jesus with them.
- Jeb’s favorite movie: Paw Patrol
- Jeb’s favorite toys: trains and Paw Patrol toys