Steve Yates Leaves Legacy of Kindness and Dancing

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Steve Yates died of a massive heart attack on June 5, 2023 in Puerto Vallarta, Jalisco, Mexico.

He leaves behind him many family and friends, including his husband John, whom he married on August 2, 2013. He was born on March 27, 1964. He was 59 years old.

Steve became familiar to many in Puerto Vallarta after performing and winning round two of Jan. 15’s So You Think You Can Rise (SYTYCR) competition. He was then able to advance to the finals of the competition. He often amazed many with his quick wit and his ease to take to the dance floor and show off his many moves.

Steve and his husband of 13 years, John, moved to PV from the San Francisco Bay Area, and have been full-time residents of Puerto Vallarta for two years.  Before retiring, Steve had a career in sales and marketing, most recently with Workday, where he retired in July 2021. He worked in a variety of roles including his most recent role as manager of solution strategy. He worked with that firm for ten years. He had previously worked with NetSuite and ADP. He studied at the University of Arizona.

His husband announced his death on Facebook saying “My heart is breaking and I have no words to describe my grief, sadness, heartbreak and loneliness.Steve was my world, my life my everything.I’m in disbelief that I have continue without him. I wish it was me! I cried doing CPR and I’m crying now wishing I could have done more. I’m sitting here so confused but knowing his last words were “I love you John!.”

Chris Genry wrote on Facebook: “They are picking up his ashes today. Yesterday morning he was still with us.

I met Steve Yates at a Christmas party just before the pandemic, so ours was a relatively short friendship. He was one of those guys I instantly knew was a rare bird; so vivacious, so engaging, with an ever present smile and a laugh that brightened a room. A natural leader, he was destined to become part of the bedrock of our community in Puerto Vallarta. Gone too soon.

I later learned of his enormous artistic talents, from making killer Easter bonnets to performing live on stage. I’ve attached a video of the night I first watched this big, burly man don the cosmetic jewelry and flashy pants and perform in a talent competition to raise funds for the local orphanage. It was a moment of pride for all of us who knew him and packed the house to support him, and he WON the night; advancing to the finals of this multi-week competition. Financial support for the orphanage was greatly increased that night. Gone too soon.

Later still, I discovered more things we had in common. Both of our fathers are the same age; both gave their careers to IBM; and both are struggling with similar health issues. His husband John Yates hails from just outside Birmingham, Alabama, where he visits his parents each year. Solo. Steve never met his in-laws; he was not included in their idea of family. Not knowing Steve is now their permanent loss. Gone too soon.

I will always be grateful to have known him, and always feel cheated for not having known him longer. It is very hard to be separated from my PV family today. My heart breaks for John, who shared every day with this enormous source of energy and joy and then, suddenly, was performing CPR trying desperately to save that life. To the quiet one, know that you are loved and admired just as much as he, and we are here for you.

The winners in all of this are the angels, who today are wearing some fabulous new jewelry and learning some new dance moves. Some vision of that will bring me comfort and joy in the days to come. RIP Dear Steve.”

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