Bettye “Marlane” Bratcher Bates of Las Cruces, New Mexico, died on Thursday, June 17, 2021.
Marlane was born on November 16, 1949 in Artesia, NM to Bettye Jo Bratcher (1929-2019) and Homer Ual Bratcher (1925-2009). She is the sister to three younger brothers, Kenny, Dennis, and Randy.
In Marlane's early years, her Mom and Dad had a farm in Tucumcari. She had many aunts, uncles, and cousins in eastern New Mexico around Artesia. She was especially close to her maternal grandparents, Daddy Paul and Mattie Belle Stevenson, where most family holidays and many summers were spent at their ranch in the Pinon/Avis area. Mattie Belle taught her an appreciation for cooking, gardening, canning, freezing, knitting, and sewing.
She attended school in Tucumcari and graduated in 1968. She attended New Mexico State University in Las Cruces, New Mexico, majoring in home economics.
On September 27, 1969, she married the love of her life, Jim Bates. They left college before completing degrees and worked at a few ranches before moving to her in-law’s ranch near Mayhill. They had their oldest son, Jared in 1971 and youngest son, Randall in 1980. Marlane worked as a cook intermittently in those years, at the Lodge in Cloudcroft and at the Mayhill Café. In 1986 they moved to Mountainair, NM where she cooked at the Mountainair Café and later substitute taught at the high school. Later in life, she returned to NMSU, earned her degree in teaching, and taught at the Headstart program for the migrant council in La Union, NM. After retirement, she was caretaker for her parents, Homer and Bettye.
Over Marlane’s life, she was a fabulous cook, substitute teacher, Sunday school teacher, seamstress, quilter, and teacher. But most of all, she was the most wonderful mother that her sons could ask for. Mom was always there for us and for that we have been so blessed.
Marlane is survived by two sons: Jared Bates (Keri) and Lt. Col. Randall Bates (Lena), three grandsons Ian, Conagher, and Plemon, and three brothers Kenny Bratcher, Dennis Bratcher, and Randy Bratcher. She was a member of the Las Cruces Church of Christ and had many close friends there.
Marlane was preceded in death by her parents.
A memorial service will be held at the Country Club Road Church of Christ, 700 West Country Club Road, Roswell, NM 88201, on Monday, June 28, 2021 at 10:00am. Lunch will be served afterwards. Her ashes will be placed with her parent’s graves at the Twin Oaks Cemetery, north of Artesia, NM, following lunch. All are welcome to join us at the graveside, but no service will be performed. In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to the Christian Children's Home, 1356 NM 236, Portales, NM 88130.
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