Deaths Death Notices
GATES, Dr. Richard W.
GATES - Dr. Richard W. Olean, NY, Dr. Richard W. Gates of 2085 Hillcrest Ave passed away unexpectedly Sunday (April 26, 2015) at Millard Fillmore Suburban Hospital in Williamsville. Born December 21, 1934 in Buffalo he was the son of Joseph D. and Alice Smith Gates. Dr. Gates was a 1952 graduate of Fosdick-Masten High School in Buffalo. Upon graduation he served in the Korean War with the US Army from 1953-1955. After honorable discharge he continued his studies and first earned a Bachelor of Science degree from Buffalo State Teachers College and then a Masters in Education degree. He immediately began teaching at Benjamin Franklin Jr. High School until 1966. He studied four years at the University of Iowa and graduated with a PhD in 1970. From 1970 to 2000 he taught at St. Bonaventure University and served as the Dean of the School of Education. Concurrently he earned an additional Masters degree in Audio Visual Technologies from Syracuse University. Upon retirement from St. Bonaventure he was employed at Buffalo State College until 2004 as a supervisor in the Student Teacher program. Dr. Gates was always living life to the fullest whether it be through travel throughout the world, piloting an airplane, skydiving or scuba diving. Locally he found the love of his life with Dr. Maria Ceprano and with her as his lifelong companion he happily accomplished many achievements. He served as a board member for the Olean Public Library, the Olean Planning board and for 20 years was a member and longtime president of the Olean City School District Board of Education. While at St. Bonaventure he was the facilitator for the local Phi Delta Kappa chapter, which consists of honor society students in the field of education. Along with Maria he was currently on the board of directors for Project Flight. Surviving besides Maria of East Amherst are one daughter Julie (Mark Sandburg) Gates of Arcade; one son Matthew D. (Sarah) Gates of Pascoag, RI; two granddaughters Lauren Gates-Sandburg and Claire Gates-Sandburg; one sister Dorothy Mathewson of Buffalo and two nieces Ruth Hays and Martha Mathewson. He was predeceased by a brother Joseph Gates. Friends will be received on Wednesday from 3-7 PM at the Casey, Halwig & Hartle Funeral Home, 3128 W. State Rd, Olean. Funeral services will be held Thursday (April 30, 2015) at 11 AM at the funeral home. Fr. Dan Riley, OFM, of St. Bonaventure University, will officiate. Burial will be in Forest Lawn Cemetery in Buffalo. Memorials may be made to the Parkinson's Association of WNY 5140 Main St., Suite 303-154, Williamsville, NY 14221. Online condolences may be expressed at