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Adapted from "Commander Ralph Bates, Dental Corp, United States Navy" [biography, dated 16 August 1949] in Modern Biographical Files collection, Navy Department Library.

  • Medicine
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  • Biography
Wars & Conflicts
  • World War II 1939-1945
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  • NHHC-Library

Ralph Bates

8 February 1916-[no death date]

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Commander Bates was born on February 8, 1916, in Kansas City, Kansas son of Marion John Bates and Mrs. Lucy Morgan Bates.  He attended public schools of Kansas City and was graduated from the Burlington, Iowa, High School.  After one year at Lombard College, Galesburg, Illinois, he entered the University of Iowa, College of Dentistry, from which he received the degree of Doctor of Dental Surgery in June 1930.  After graduation he practiced Dentistry for two years in Iowa and three years in Wisconsin.

Passing the competitive Navy entrance examination at the Great Lakes Naval Training Station, he entered the Dental Corps of the Navy on April 8, 1936, in the rank of Lieutenant (jg).  He subsequently advanced to the rank of Commander, to date from November 18, 1942.

After accepting a commission in the Dental Corps of the Navy in April 1936, Commander Bates became a student Dental Officer at the Naval Dental School.  Upon completion of the postgraduate course, he was assigned to the Naval Academy, Annapolis, Maryland, for duty as Assistant Dental Officer until April 1937.  He then served at sea as Ship’s Dental Officer consecutively in the USS Charleston, the USS Omaha, and the USS Northampton, until March 1940.  Then transferred to shore duty, he had duty at the US Navy Yard, Mare Island, California, as Assistant Dental Officer until detached in January 1942.

Following duty as Senior Dental Officer of the USS Holland for two years, Commander Bates reported in February 1944 for shore duty at the US Naval Air Station, Clinton, Oklahoma, where he served as Senior Dental Officer until July of that year.  He had similar duty at the Naval Air Technical Training Center, Memphis, Tennessee, and in February 1947 was ordered to the Tenth Naval District, San Juan, Puerto Rico, where he served successively as US Naval Air Station Dental Officer and District Dental Officer.  In August 1948 he became US Naval Station Dental Officer and Tenth Naval District Dental Officer, his present assignment.

Commander Bates is entitled to the American Defense Service Medal, the American Area Campaign Medal, the Asiatic-Pacific Area Campaign Medal, and the World War II Victory Medal.


Published: Fri Mar 05 10:16:53 EST 2021