April 28, 1923 - May 10, 2020
Julian Stovall Watson died peacefully in his sleep on Mother's Day, May 10, 2020, in his apartment at The Legacy at Crystal Falls in Leander, Texas. He was 97 years old.
Julian is survived by his daughter, Mary Ann Nagyvary of Jonestown, TX; his sons, Julian David Watson of Chappaqua, NY, and Ronald Owen Watson of Seattle, WA; his grandchildren, Sara Elizabeth Watson of Saunderstown, RI, Julian Graham Watson of North Kingstown, RI, Kathryn Ann Chase of Leander, TX, Owen Andrew Watson of San Jose, CA, Ann Elizabeth Watson of Seattle, WA, Laura Rose Watson of San Diego, CA; and great-grandchildren, Aidan Stovall Chase and Josephine Cherie Chase of Leander, TX, and Eli James Watson of Saunderstown, RI. He was preceded in death by his wife of 62 years, Betty Owen Watson in 2013.
Julian was born on April 28, 1923, in Helen, GA, to Julian Clarence Watson and Mary Stovall Watson. He graduated from Gadsden (AL) High School in 1940, then served in the Army Air Corps during WWII in 1944-45, completing basic training in College Station, TX.
After the service, he studied mechanical engineering at the University of Alabama at Tuscaloosa. He worked as a mechanical engineer for Republic Steel, Rust Engineering, and BE&K in Gadsden and Birmingham, AL. In 1950 he married Betty Ann Owen whom he met at Republic Steel. In the 1950s, the couple welcomed three children into their home. His children remember him as a loving father who instilled an ethic of self-sufficiency and achievement, a love of the outdoors, and a strong Christian faith.
All his life Julian was physically strong and active. He loved swimming, boating, waterskiing, hiking, and camping with his family. He was an accomplished craftsman, skilled in carpentry and other trades, and even built his first home in Gadsden virtually by himself. An avid lifelong University of Alabama football fan, he also enjoyed cheering for Texas A&M (unless they were playing 'Bama!) when he and Betty moved to College Station in 2006 to be near their daughter and granddaughter. He relocated to Cedar Park in 2016 to continue to live near them.
He was gregarious, generous in spirit, and profoundly family-oriented. He loved Betty, his children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren, and kept in touch with relatives in Alabama, South Carolina and Georgia. He lived by deeply felt principles and a strong integrity. Throughout his life he was an active and dedicated church member – first at Dawson Memorial Baptist in Birmingham, then First Baptist in College Station, and most recently Hope Presbyterian Church in Austin.
A virtual memorial gathering will be scheduled to celebrate his life. In lieu of flowers, please send donations to Samaritan's Purse at Samaritan's Purse, PO Box 3000, Boone, NC 28607, or online at www.samitaritanspurse.org.
The family would like to thank Resolutions Hospice, particularly head nurse Sheila Hayes, and Jennifer Wright for their heartfelt concern and dedicated care. During the pandemic quarantine, their loving daily presence and touch brought enormous peace and comfort to him and his family who could not be by his side.