LARRY VON TATE
Larry Von Tate, 81, passed away peacefully at his home on December 29, 2016, surrounded by family. Graveside service will be at 11 a.m. on Thursday, January 5, 2017 at Ore City Cemetery with Pastor John Whitehurst officiating.
He was born January 14, 1935 in Longview to Luster Von and Mable Dean Tate. He was raised in Longview and attended Kilgore College.
In 1954, when he was only 19, Larry began his banking career, at the former First National Bank in Longview. He progressed rapidly through the Transit Department, Proof Department, Teller, Loan Teller, Assistant Cashier to Assistant Vice President. At the young age of 29 he was elected to Vice President.
He was active in civic organizations and played basketball on the Longview City League Team in 1955.
He served as President of the American Bank, when it formally opened in October 1969. He was the former President of Citizens Bank in Kilgore, resigning to take an active part in the Oil and Gas development of East Texas. In the late ‘70s and early ‘80s his company drilled many Cotton Valley test wells. He remained active in the Oil and Gas Industry until his passing.
Larry was a Life Member of the Longview Junior Chamber of Commerce, and was made a Life Member of the Texas Jaycees in 1964. He was honored as Jaycee of the Year, when he was 27 years old and was the youngest Texas Jaycee President, at that time. During his Presidency, in execution of his duties, he traveled an unprecedented 300,000 miles, over 100,000 by automobile!
He was a member, past President and Treasurer of the East Texas Oil Man’s Golf Association, past member of the Board of Directors of Kilgore Chamber of Commerce, and a past president of the former Roy H. Laird Country Club in Kilgore. He is a Charter Member of Grace Crossing United Methodist Church in Longview.
He was preceded in death by his parents.
Larry is survived by his wife, Beverley Tate; son, Larry Michael Tate; daughter, Melinda Tate Willbanks and husband Rob; grandchildren, Chelsea Tate Copeland and husband Spencer, Taylor McElyea, Lauren and Meredith Long; brother, James Tate and wife Karolyn of Thornton, Colo.; and step-daughters, Leigh Ann Roy, Vicki Willkie and husband John.
In lieu of flowers, Larry wished for donations to be made to the Grace Crossing United Methodist Church, P.O. Box 9100, Longview Texas, 75608.
The family would like to extend a special thank you to Dr. C. R. Martin and Dr. Rodney Slone for their professional and personal care, to Good Shepherd Home Health, and Heartsway Hospice.
A memorial reception will be held Thursday, January 5, at 1 p.m. at Tyler Street Bistro for anyone wishing to share a few memories.