A remarkable career as a national and international athlete began in 1967 when Leroy Coates participated in wheelchair sports competitions held in conjunction with the Pan-Am Games in Winnipeg.
At that event, Coates captured a silver medal for shotput and a bronze in discus competition. He also captained the Saskatchewan team at the Expo Games in Montreal that year.
The years saw Coates earn six medals, including three gold, at the national championship in Edmonton games to Montreal that year. He was also a member of the Canadian basketball and volleyball teams at international games in Israel. From 1969 to 1974, Coates captured medals at Canadian championship. He also was chosen to represent Canada at a number of international events including the 1970 world games in New Zealand, the1971 Pan‑Am Games in Peru, the 1972 Olympics in West Germany and the 1973 and 1974 Stoke‑Mandville games in England.
Throughout those competitions, Coates performed at world-class levels, capturing medals in a variety of events including shotput, discus, volleyball, basketball and table tennis, in all 37 medals – 10 gold, 12 silver and 15 bronze.
Inducted into the Prince Albert Sports Hall of Fame in 1990.