We’d like to extend a warm invitation to the enduring legacy of two people very special to us—Dr. John Spates and Ms. Linda Spates. John and Linda delivered meals together and Linda is a former board member.

Opening Reception: Friday June 2, 2023 from 5–7 PM with ongoing exhibit through the month of June (Tuesday – Friday 9:30 AM – 5:00 PM)
Location: The Villager Gallery and Frameworks | 429 East Grand Ave | Beloit, WI 53511

Dr. John and Mrs. Linda Carter Spates both grew up in Beloit, WI. They met in high school, stayed in touch, fell in love, and married on December 20, 1964. John took on a dental practice in town after graduating from Marquette University. Linda attended Northwestern University and became a second-grade teacher. Together, they raised several beautiful canines, enjoyed trips to their Florida condo, and going to the beach. Frequent visits and fun times with family and friends were an ongoing, standard practice. After retiring, John became an avid photographer (or as he preferred, “a guy who takes pictures”). As with his other interests; woodworking, and music, he mastered the craft of photography, developing prints in his own darkroom.

Linda had many talents too. She enjoyed weaving and tending her many wildflowers and plants in the lovely gardens around their home. Linda was an avid reader who liked to volunteer at the Beloit Public Library. She also took an interest in antiques and mid-century modern design which she eventually developed into a small business at a local antique mall. For a time, Linda was on the board of Meals on Wheels and together with John, they delivered meals and checked in on Beloit’s elderly. Towards the end of his life, John came to rely on the services that Meals on Wheels provides, appreciating not only the nourishment, but also the daily check-ins and friendly encounters.

John enjoyed spending his time at many of his favorite haunts around Beloit such as Bagels and More, The 615 Club, Sud’s O’Hanahans, and The Beloit Art Center, often sporting his beloved “Grumpy Old Photographer” baseball cap. This saying made him chuckle out loud, eyes twinkling, revealing the truth inside.

John and Linda enjoyed traveling, participating in art shows, collecting artwork, and meeting artists, often receiving “Best in Show” accolades. They lived a very happy life in their Beloit home until Linda developed Alzheimer’s disease and passed away on January 10, 2017. John missed her every day, and they were reunited at his passing at the age of 80 on July 29, 2021. Jack and Linda Carter, Janet and Jim Anderson, along with nephews; Mark, Scott, Robert, Bruce, Matthew, and Jeffrey, and nieces; Nancy, Jennifer, Laura, and Lindsey, and their many friends will all miss John and Linda.

In tribute to them, The Villager Gallery and Frameworks is hosting an exhibit and sale of John’s remaining photography. The exhibit will open on Friday June 2 with a reception from 5:00–7:00 PM. The exhibit will continue through the end of the month with proceeds benefiting Beloit Meals on Wheels.