David Marno Watson

21 May, 194511 November, 2020

David Marno Watson, May 21, 1945 - November 11, 2020

It is with heavy hearts that we announce the passing of our loving father, Dave Watson, who passed away at the Cornwall Community Hospital, Cornwall, Ontario with his beloved daughters at his side, Jennifer gently cradling his hand and head.

Dad was predeceased by his parents, David and Victoria (nee Parada) Watson, brother Garry Watson and his loyal, beloved, fury friend Ernie.

He leaves to mourn his precious daughters Laurie McCarthy (Soleil Gallego), Jennifer Flanagan (Tom), mother of his daughters Deb Zinnick, sister Hope Watson-Bailey (Jay) brother Royal Watson, sister-in-law Beverly Watson, and five very special nieces Monique (his goddaughter), Nicole, Keehan, Caris, and Ambryl.

Dad was born on May 21, 1945 in Toronto, Ontario. In following his calling, he received a Bachelor of Pedagogy degree from the University of Manitoba and started teaching, fulfilling the profession with passion and love. Dad taught in northern Manitoba, Gimli, and the latest, Swan Lake where he also became Principal and ultimately retired with a love for all his students, whom he referred to as his “kids”. He was a dedicated teacher and principal with a passion for his work and a deep commitment to his students’ success. He devoted many hours on extracurricular activities as he believed that they strengthen the mind in ways that traditional learning often couldn’t. Dad retired after spending many years teaching and living in Swan Lake, Manitoba where he made many lifelong friends. Due to health conditions, Dad moved to Ottawa, Ontario with his daughter Jennifer for his remaining years and they became an inseparable duo, a strong team. While in Ottawa Dad continued to keep in touch with his Manitoba friends and many former students who thought the world of him, even though aphasia made it quite challenging at times.

Back in the day, Dad loved Belgian bowling and hosting his friends for barbeques. He loved his community and was both a Knights of Columbus member and a Lions Club member. He was the Mayor of Swan Lake, an avid golfer and a pool shark.

In the past ten years, forming a team with Jen, Dad loved riding his bike, going for brunches, getting mani/pedis with Jen, FaceTiming with Laurie and Soleil (oh boy!), car rides to feel the sun on his face and the wind in his hair, and he loved it when Jen brushed his hair and scratched his back. Dad loved trying new activities and was excited to go to new places, such as our little spots at the shoreline and drives through Newington and Lunenburg, little towns that reminded him of Swan Lake. Above all, he had an incredible sense of humour and loved to laugh. Everyone he met just adored him. He grew a tremendously grateful heart, by him and Jen giving thanks for little things every day.

The family would like to give a special Thank you to all the staff and nurses at Woodland Villa nursing home who looked after Dad with the utmost care, compassion, and kindness, as an extension of Jen. You were his angels and we will never forget the comfort you provided.

Rest In Peace Dad, the world is so empty without you. Forever missed, forever loved.

Arrangements have been entrusted to LAHAIE AND SULLIVAN CORNWALL FUNERAL HOMES, WEST BRANCH, 20 Seventh St W (613-932-8482). Cremation will be taking place.

As expressions of sympathy memorial donations to the Ottawa Aphasia Centre would be appreciated by the family. Messages of Condolence may be left at

Add a


No public services are scheduled at this time. Receive a notification when services are updated.
Show Your


David Marno Watson

have a memory or condolence to add?

Rick Lippens

25 November 2020

Mr. Watson was a very gifted person, who shared his love of life, learning and family with all of us who got to know him. It was clear from his first visit to Bruxelles in 1985 how much he loved his family, and his closeness to them, having freshly moved from Gimli. It was quick to discover how different a teacher he would be from anyone else who taught us before. He held a steady hand with discipline from the very start of his taking over Westmount High School as principal, giving clear guidance on his expectations. As he started teaching, he made it known that, although he was previously focused on geography, English was his passion, and it showed. In all things, he showed care to us and he was good to us during his time in Swan Lake and Bruxelles. I was also blown away by his ability to teach us how to do critical thinking, and even how to think like a lawyer in Law class. His efforts have changed my life, and he will be truly missed. He was also there for us after school hours, and was passionate about his students. My condolences to his family.

Erin Crampton

18 November 2020

Our education both academic and extra curricular was Mr. Watson's top priority. He made it clear in every interaction he had with us.

We saw his care in every corrected paper, in every patient explanation, at every drama practice.

He expected more from us than other teachers did and in that expectation set us up to create our own success in the world.

With his teaching, Mr. Watson gifted awkward teenagers a treasure that many of us still carry into adulthood.

I am so sorry to hear of Mr. Watson's passing. He was one of the great ones.

Amy Van Woensel

16 November 2020

Deepest sympathies to his family & friends. I had the pleasure (unbeknownst at the time!) of being a student of Mr. Watson. He was an excellent teacher, & really knew how to challenge his students. People loved & hated his classes all at once. I will never forget the Ides of March...he was always giddy about the morning announcement on March 15, when we would hear “Beware the ides of March”.

Jennifer Clark

16 November 2020

My deepest condolences to Dave Watson’s family and friends. Mr. Watson’s English classes were by far my favourite classes in high school. His passion and energy for the literature he taught helped affirm my own love for the written word. I felt like I wasn’t the only one! He was the first teacher to show me what good writers and good writing can teach us about the world we live in. I have often thought about his classes in the years since. I remember attending some university-level literature classes and thinking they were nothing like the depth and energy of Mr. Watson’s classes. He was an excellent teacher. May you take comfort in the many joyful memories he has left behind.

Candice Rigaux

16 November 2020

I'm so sorry to hear of Mr. Watson's passing. He was by far the most popular teacher at Westmount Complex in his years teaching in Swan Lake. He had such a talent for inspiring students while still challenging them. Mr. Watson made every student feel like they were his favourite, and took a genuine interest in improving the school. He was not only an incredible teacher, but also a huge contributor to our small community. I have such fond memories of his English and Law classes, his trips to Ice Capades with the church alter servants, and of course, Belgian bowling. My condolences to his daughters, whom he always spoke of with such love.

Evelyn Sanders

16 November 2020

I met Dave at the friendship centre in Swan Lake . Playing cards on a Tuesday afternoon (bein). What a great guy & lots of fun!!!! Very good sportsman!

Steve Jonk

15 November 2020

Sorry to hear about the passing of Mr. Watson, I always respected him as a teacher, and as a great coach in baseball and volleyball. He commanded respect from all of his students, and always amazed me with his intellect. He will be missed

Eric Crampton

15 November 2020

"And for God's sake, don't let your participles dangle!"

Mr Watson was one of the great ones.

It was easy to tell, even when we were students, that Mr Watson's classes were special. He wasn't there to fill in time. He loved the English language and wanted us to love it too. It's a tough love; English is a harsh mistress.

We learned how to write.

But it was hard to appreciate just how special he was before leaving Westmount - and how lucky we were to have been his students.

Dave pushed back against a fashionable tide that considered grammar at best to be useless, and at worst to be harmful. It had to have been difficult.

Thanks Mr Watson. I'll have a glass of whisky for you tonight. And I'll remember not to let my participles dangle.

James Hacault

15 November 2020

You know how most people have that “one” high school teacher who they loved and was influential for the rest of their lives? That was Dave Watson for myself and I suspect a lot of his other students. He was engaging, entertaining, and challenged his students every day. Dave always seemed larger than life and was very involved with the community. His classes were the highlight of my day at Westmount school. My deepest condolences to his family.

Michelle Kendall (nee Desrochers)

15 November 2020

To the Watson Family,

As a former student of Mr. Watson, I would like to express my deepest condolences to you all. He was a firecracker of a human and did his utmost to get the best out of his students. I will never forget his unique ability to gain our attention (throwing chalk across the classroom) and respect (demanding our top effort on thinking outside the box and paying close attention to grammar). I will forever be in his debt for my writing and communication abilities as he definitely helped me to fine tune them. They just don’t make English teachers like him anymore! He was always in touch with the youth in his own way and I loved his classes (even when he was REALLY hard on us)! He definitely made an impact on my life, and I will forever be grateful. Hold close those wonderful memories you have and let them shine light on your darker days. He will be missed.

My thoughts and prayers are with you,


Learn more about the Watson name