Mr. Batts was born July 19, 1922, in Yoakum, to Lee Eddy and Mettie Cecil Batts.
He graduated from Jefferson Davis High School in Houston. After graduation, he enlisted in the U.S. Navy as one of the 1,000 “Houston Volunteers” who enlisted as crew of the Cruiser USS Houston CA-30, nicknamed the “Galloping Ghost of the Java Coast” to replace those believed lost.
He achieved Sonarman first class and served aboard PC1194 (an anti-submarine convoy escort ship).
Bert was selected to attend USN Officers Training School and attended Southern Methodist University as a midshipman, majoring in electrical engineering and completing four semesters of study before receiving an honorable discharge from USN on Jan. 6, 1946.
After the war, he attended Rice University then joined his father and brothers in the Batts Upholstering Company in Yoakum and later in Victoria.
On Oct. 3, 1946, he married Arzelia Vernell Luerssen in Yoakum.
Eventually, he relocated to Refugio and worked for Hewitt and Doughtery, managing their gasoline refineries until 1990 when he retired.
He was preceded in death by his parents; wife; brothers, Louverne Batts, Robert “Buster” Batts and Shelby M. Batts; and sister, Marie Wainscott.
Survivors include his sister, Cora Izola Miller of Shiner; his children, Tom L. (Gayle) Batts Sr. of Cuero, Marilyn Dufrene of Victoria and Janet (Chris) Heard of Bay City; seven grandchildren, Tom L. Batts Jr., Brian D. Batts, Matthew W. Batts, Peggy Whiting, Chris Lowrie, Chad Lowrie and Ryan Batts; six great-grandchildren and numerous nieces and nephews.
The funeral service was conducted at 10:30 a.m. Saturday, June 28, with Pastor Barbara Beale officiating.
A graveside service and burial with full military honors under the auspices of the Victoria Veterans Council followed at Memory Gardens Cemetery, Victoria.
Pallbearers were Chris Lowrie, Tom Batts Jr., Brian Batts, Chad Lowrie, Ryan Batts, Matt Batts and Brian Whiting.
Honorary pallbearers are Roy Batts, Robert Brown, Donald Brown, Mike Brown, Ronald Luerssen, David McClanahan, Jim Norman, Mike Norman, Delbert Maggard and Tommy Repka.