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By Gina Steward
Telegram CEO Publisher 

My aunties pass down a Legacy of Love

The Bates Women Rock!


March 26, 2020

My aunts came together for Aunt Rosemary Burgess' 80th Birthday. Pictured to the right of Rosemary are Willa Royals, Joyce Edwards, Dr. Ethel Burns and Hattie Jackson

As the celebration of Woman's History Month comes to an end, I want to shout out a group of ladies that have had an immense affect on my life. I normally write a column about my mom during this month because one, its Women's History Month and she was an awesome woman, but also because, this is the month that she died, March 15, 2001. This year I want to let my mom's sisters, Rosemary Burgess, Willa Royals, Dr. Ethel Burns, Hattie Jackson and Joyce Edwards know how much they mean to me. (I have one other aunt, Rose Bow – my dad's sister, that I love too, but this column is about my mom's sisters.)

My aunties are the best. Whenever we are in their presence there is a sense of Love, Love, Love. I am not the huggy kissy type of person, but that goes by the wayside when it comes to them. Whether you like it or not, you are going to get a kiss and a hug. (commercial break – A hug and a kiss goes a long way at brightening your day) You can be guaranteed that what is coming in the next sentence is 'I love you' and followed by 'How are you doing?' You know some people ask, "How are you doing? Just to make small talk, but not them, they really want to know how you are doing. Then the conversation begins. They always have time to listen to me and offer words of encouragement.

As I thought about how I would honor my mom, Regina Wilson, this year, I decided to honor her sisters. They are standing in the gap for my mom for me and my siblings. The Aunties get together often and on those special occasions that the nieces can attend is always a treat. 'Talking about a room full of love'. The spooky thing is...those Bates genes are strong. I see a piece of my mom in each of them. She was the oldest and next year will mark the twenty (20) year anniversary of her transition to be with The Lord. But I believe my grandparents, Clarence and Ethel Bates put it into their children the values of taking care of each other and the family at large. I'm sure my mom is smiling in heaven as she sees her sisters taking care of her children. That legacy is being passed down as me and my siblings are there for our nieces and nephews. We will not let our grandparents down as we have learned from the best


So a big shout out goes to the Bates girls or in other words, my Aunties. They rock!

Gina Wilson Steward



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