Our beloved and blessed Laura May Bates Arnold passed away peacefully at her home on July 16, 2021 surrounded by family. She was born May 15, 1930, in the family home to Ernest Bates and Louise Butler Bates in the Teton Valley area of Idaho. Laura came from a large family (siblings: Hyrum, Leonora, Merrill, June, Orrin, Irvin, Neva, Steven, Velda, Wanda, Gwenith, Derold, Cloyd, Marvin, Twila, and Carol). She spoke fondly of growing up on the family farm with her siblings and remained close to them throughout her life.
As a young woman, Laura attended Teton Valley High School and graduated from Ricks College (now known as BYU Idaho) with a major in Elementary Education and a double minor in Music and Psychology. After graduation, Laura taught numerous elementary students in the Bonneville and Jordan School Districts.
Laura strived her entire life to be a missionary and follow the Savior’s example. She served as a missionary for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in the Western Canadian Mission. She also served in many callings, including den mother, young women’s president, chorister, ward missionary, and visiting teacher. In addition, Laura spent many hours researching ancestors and linking genealogical records.
Laura married Gerald L. Arnold on August 16, 1957, in the Idaho Falls Temple. Together, they were wonderful parents and raised ten children. Laura taught her children the value of hard work, patriotism, and a love for the gospel of Jesus Christ. She spent countless hours faithfully keeping journals and updating her children’s baby books. She was the motivating force behind each of her sons achieving the rank of Eagle Scout.
This amazing and elect woman will be missed greatly and is survived by her children Sherilyn, Deanna, James, Bruce (Povie), Elaine (Robert), David (Georgia), Shirley (Ted), Steven (Kristin), Aaron (Jenn), Kim (Matt) and siblings, Gwen Shepherd, Derold (Nyla) Bates, Marvin Bates, Twila Worthington, Carol (Charlie) Pyne, 36 grandchildren and 22 great grandchildren (so far).
Laura loved everyone and is no doubt enjoying a traditional Bates family reunion with her parents, husband Gerald, and siblings Hyrum Bates (infant), Leonora (Albert) Tenity, Merrill (Thora) Bates, June (Morris) Josephson, Orrin (Marjorie) Bates, Irvin (Ruth) Bates, Neva (Rollo) Barrett, Steven (Mary) Bates, Velda (J) Bevan; (Frank) McKellar, Wanda (Dee) Humble, Cloyd (Elenor) Bates, (Todd Shepherd), (Shirley Bates), (Paul Worthington) son-in-law Milan Hopkins, granddaughters Audrey May Arnold and McKenzee Bird.
We are grateful to have had this wonderful and beautiful woman in our lives and, through the atonement of Jesus Christ, look forward the day when we see her once again.
The family would like to thank all of those who so lovingly cared for our sweet Laura and treated her with such dignity, kindness, and respect during her final moments on earth.
Funeral services will be held at 11:00 am on Monday, July 26, 2021 at the Sandy Park Ward, 1050 East Galena Drive, Sandy, UT. A visitation will be held on Sunday evening from 6-8 pm at Larkin Sunset Gardens, 1950 East Dimple Dell Road (10600 South), Sandy, UT and Monday morning from 9:30-10:30 am prior to the services at the church. If you would like to watch the services virtually or share a favorite memory of Laura with her family, please visit larkincares.com.
To join the services virtually please click on the blue "Watch services" box to the right of her picture. You will then click on another link. You will need to have a Zoom account. To sign up for your own free account, visit zoom.us/signup and enter your email address. You will receive an email from Zoom (firstname.lastname@example.org). In this email, click Activate Account.
My deepest condolences go out to the family and friends of Laura,
She was a great Daughter, She was a great wife, a great mother, a great Sister, A great Grandparent and a great friend, She was all of those things and more, I love your mother for all the wonderful things that she did for me when I was a younger not so humble boy, she was a good listener and a good advice giver she always could spare a bite to eat and a warm bed if nedded,, She truly cared about people and I will never forget MRS "A" RIP
My dear cousins.
I wish I could be there to see you all and to remember Aunt Laura and her life. I loved her energy and kindness. She so kindly let me sleep on her couch when I was taking classes in Provo. I loved that time with her, Deanna and Sherry. I enjoyed when David and his family lived in Pocatello. I enjoyed hanging with Elaine while we were growing up. I feel very blessed to call you all family!
To all of my dear cousins. It's so hard to see Aunt Laura's photo here. Makes it real. I can't believe your mom is gone. I want you all to know I loved her so much! She was always happy, always laughing when I was around her. It was fun and interesting to listen to her tell stories of our ancestors, grandma and grandpa and all her brothers and sisters. I feel she was the last tie I had to my mom here on earth because they were so close. My mom loved spending time with your mom. They used to go to the Dollar store in Sandy by Aunt Laura's house because that location was the best, according to my mom. Then they would go out to lunch or spend time at each other's homes just talking. They would spend hours and hours talking on the phone, something my mom always enjoyed and looked forward to. Aunt Laura was always there when my mom was lonely and needed to talk. Their voices even sounded alike.
You all were so good to us when my mom's life on earth was ending. You visited us, brought us thoughtful gift baskets of food and magazines to help us as we were at her bedside, and Deanna, you even rolled your IV pole and all your tubes into my mom's room to check on her after you had emergency surgery yourself! Sherilyn, mom loved the conversations she had with you as well. You were always so gracious. Mom had special memories of each of you and loved you all, as do I.
I am so sorry, but I am unable to attend the services. I really wanted to visit with your mom before she passed away. I've been our of town for a couple of weeks and was heartbroken when I received the news. I want you all to know I love Aunt Laura so very much and will miss her and her phone calls. I will be thinking of and praying for you all to be blessed with peace and comfort at this very difficult time.
Sorry to hear about the loss of your mother. I know you will miss her. But just know that she is in a better place. Our thoughts and prayers are with you.
I’m sorry for your loss for your family she was a great lady
My sincere condolences to you Sheri and family at the loss of your beautiful mother. Thinking of you at this deeply emotional time. Love from Australia xxx
We were so blessed to finally meet Laura and some of her beautiful children after so many years. We are relatives through the Arnolds in Canada. Laura was such a sweet person and so wonderful to us. She called to check up on us after we met and we had felt as if we had known her all our lives. Her faith would just "shine through" and she possessed such a caring spirit. She is with God and she has left such a beautiful legacy. Rest in peace, dear Laura. We will remember you with such fond memories. May God hold her extended family in the palm of His hand at this difficult time. God bless you all! Karen and Art Brown, Orlando, Florida
Shirley, I just happened to see this and wanted to let you know how how sorry I am for your loss. Losing your mom is hard no matter how old you are. Take care.
We’re sending our prayers 🙏🙏and condoleances to the family
We remember her as a strong woman and we don’t forget our good talks about religion
Laura was one of the finest women I ever had the pleasure to visit with. She was articulate, poetic, patient, caring and kind.
She cared deeply about her family and gave everything to keeping her family strong after losing her husband of ten children at such a young age.
They have all grown into people that make her proud. I feel honored to know this lovely family.
I'll always keep my memories of Laura and her entire family inside my heart. She was an amazing lady and daughter of God. Since moving from across the street from their home, I still fondly remember the times spent in Sandy/White City and the memories that will never go away. I wish her entire family and friends the best ... I'll be with you virtually come Monday morning and look forward when we can meet once again with warm hugs.