SALISBURY, Md. - On March 22, 2013, Rodney H. LeCates, age 71, departed this life peacefully surrounded by his loving family at Peninsula Regional Medical Center, to the arms of his Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. Born in Frankford, Delaware on December 22, 1941, he was the son of the late Rodney and Kathryn LeCates. Rodney graduated from John M. Clayton High School (Indian River) in 1959. In July of that year, he joined the Navy and served as 3rd Class Petty Officer Hospital Corpsman, on the aircraft carrier USS Randolph. He was on board when the crew pulled Astronaut Virgil Grissom from the water when he splashed down after orbiting the Earth. After receiving an Honorable Discharge, he began employment with the E.I. DuPont Company in Seaford, DE in 1963. He retired as a Support Team Supervisor, Human Resources in 1998 with 35 years of service. Rodney was a Master Mason in Shade River Lodge #453 in Chester, Ohio. He belonged to the following York Rite Bodies; Pomeroy Chapter #80, Bosworth Council #46 and Ohio Valley #24, all in Middleport, Ohio. He was also a devoted member and treasurer of St John's United Methodist Church in Deal Island. He served in many capacities: from the youth ministry, even dressing up as Santa Claus, to cutting the grass in the church yard. The friends he made in church and in Deal Island brought him much support and comfort during his last few years. Rodney was a loving father, grandfather and husband. He will be missed for his humor, zest for life and caring nature. He loved to welcome family and friends into his home for steamed crabs. He also enjoyed cooking and fishing. He was an avid Kasey Kahne NASCAR fan and took great pride in seeing Kasey win his first race with his new team, Hendrick Motorsports.
He is survived by his loving son and best friend Mike LeCates and his wife Terry of Salisbury; his ex-wife and caregiver, Penny LeCates; his loving grandchildren, Cassie and Jake, who brought him so much joy and laughter. Additionally he is survived by special sisters in law, Jeannie Wilder and Gwen LeCates; a sister, Alma Young and numerous nieces and nephews, extended family and many friends. In addition to his parents, he is preceded in death by a brother Robert (Bob) LeCates.
Family and friends are invited to attend a service and celebration of life to be held at 2:00 PM on Saturday, April 6, 2013 at St. John's United Methodist Church, 9883 Deal Island Rd., Deal Island, MD 21821. Officiating will be his Pastor and friend, Rev. Foard. The family expresses their deepest thanks to the nurses and staff of the PCU at PRMC, with special thanks to Dr. Ngaiza. In lieu of flowers, Rodney requested that donations be sent payable to the Rodney LeCates Grandchildren College Fund, c/o Hebron Saving Bank, P.O. Box 59, Hebron, MD 21830 or St John's United Methodist Church P.O. Box 134, Deal Island, MD 21821.
Arrangements are in the care of Holloway Funeral Home, P.A., 501 Snow Hill Road, Salisbury, MD 21804. Please visit Holloway Funeral Home's website to express condolences to the family.