Princeton Mourns Ann Bates, Wife Of Men’s Lacrosse Coach Chris Bates

Dr. Ann Bates, the wife of Princeton men’s lacrosse coach Chris Bates, passed away earlier today after a nearly decade-long battle with cancer. She was nine days past her 43rd birthday.

“She was the most courageous, inspirational person I ever met,” said Chris Bates. “She hit every challenge head on. She was really just an inspiration.”

Ann Bates was first diagnosed with brain cancer in 2003. Since then, she twice fought off the disease, first then and again when she was diagnosed with a form of leukemia in the summer of 2009, just three days after her husband was named the Tiger head coach.

After a bone marrow transplant and a lengthy stay in the hospital, Ann Bates was in remission – until the brain tumor returned this past May. She had surgery to remove the tumor, but ultimately the disease overtook her. She passed away early this afternoon.

Ann Bates was a graduate of William & Mary, and she attended medical school at the University of Virginia before doing her residency in pediatrics at North Caroilna. It was there that she met Chris Bates, who was a graduate student at UNC and about to become the head coach at Drexel.

“She loved Princeton,” Bates said. “She loved Princeton lacrosse. She was such a big part of the program at Drexel, and it’s a great sadness that she never really got the same opportunity here.”

Ann and Chris Bates have one child, their 10-year-old son Nicholas.

Funeral arrangements are still pending.

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