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Obituary: Bill Tate, Jan. 25, 1947-Jan. 14, 2024

For The Madera Tribune

Bill Tate.


The passing of Bill Tate from cancer has affected so many people. A large man, with a large, loving personality, and the biggest smile you ever saw.

Bill was born in Arkansas and moved to California at age four. Bill had a meagre upbringing working the fields with his family in Madera, California. Bill was one of the strongest men anyone would ever meet, which made Bill a sought-after athlete for wrestling and football.

Bill wrestled and played football at Oklahoma State on a scholarship and later transferred to Northern Arizona State University, where he starred in football. Bill was invited to try out for the NFL; however, he chose not to continue playing football. After graduating from Northern Arizona State, Bill worked in several jobs until he chose a career in Law Enforcement. Bill served with distinction for 30 years with the San Jose Police Department. After retirement Bill worked part time for the Santa Clara County Sheriff’s Office.

Bill had a gift of gab which made him very successful in mediating conflicts with those he encountered during his career. Bill was also a good listener which enamored those who knew him. Bill was a man of God and the good lord will certainly make a special place for Bill for eternity. 

Bill is survived by his first wife, Ann Tate, and their two boys Michael and Danny Tate and a daughter-in-law. Bill’s second wife, Judith Tate, had three children — Lonnie, Will, and Veronica — and many grandchildren and great grandchildren. Bill also had a brother, Bobby Tate, and wife Alice. Many nieces and nephews, and countless numbers of friends, both in Madera and San Jose, will miss Bill. May he rest in peace.



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