Tonya Lynn Watkins

June 25, 1964July 7, 2018
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Tonya Lynn Watkins, 54, of Amarillo, passed away Saturday, July 7th, 2018.

The family will receive friends from 12:00 pm to 1:45 pm on Friday, July 13, 2018 in the Memorial Park Funeral Home Chapel of Memories with a celebration of life service to follow at 2:00 pm with Scott Edwards-Elder presiding.

Tonya was born on June 25th, 1964 in Cheyenne, Wyoming to Don Paul Snider and Jamie Carol Cowell. She attended Amarillo High and Amarillo College. Tonya had an outgoing personality and never met a stranger. Her enjoyment in life came from spending time with family and friends, countless travels and adventures, as well as shopping with her family. Tonya devoted the last several years to taking care of the two most precious people in her life: her mother, Janie and son, Christopher, both of whom she recently joined in Heaven. Countless friends will remember her tireless friendship and the kindness of her heart. In addition, we will miss how she quickly volunteered to host family get-togethers or gathered friends for an exciting night on the town.

Tonya was preceded in death by her parents, Don and Janie Snider; her father-in-law, “Strick” Watkins; and of course her beloved son, Christopher Watkins. Survivors include brother Todd Snider and Coleen Carroll of Amarillo; niece Maegan Seymour and husband Christopher of Amarillo; niece Hannah Snider-Gonzales and husband AJ of Bryan, Texas; nephew Chase Snider of Amarillo; “sister” Sheri Arnold; best friend Jackie Bonner, and children Eric, Alexis, and Hannah; mother-in-law Caroline Watkins of Amarillo, and countless aunts, uncles, cousins, friends and everyone that knew her well enough to be called “family”.


  • Visitation Friday, July 13, 2018
  • Celebration of Life Friday, July 13, 2018

Tonya Lynn Watkins

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      When Tonya Lynn Watkins walked into the room, those in her company felt energy, an enthusiastic spontaneity. This was just one example of who Tonya was and how she impacted those around her. Tonya was a clever and gregarious person who always sought out the finest attributes in other people. It was as if Tonya wanted to share all of their experiences, revel in their lives and celebrate their discoveries. Tonya was tireless and had boundless enthusiasm that would serve her well throughout her life.

      Tonya was born on June 25, 1964 at Cheyenne Wyoming General Hospital in Cheyenne, Wyoming. She was the daughter of Janie and Don Snider. Tonya was raised in Amarillo, Texas. Always at the ready with a good joke, she grew up to be quite a humorous person. While some who knew Tonya might describe her as an idealist, her friends and family understood well that Tonya was always in pursuit of life’s endless possibilities and opportunities available to her.

      Tonya was raised with one sibling. She had one brother, Todd Snider. Tonya was very accepting and supportive of her family. She was perceived as the central person in her family in terms of keeping communication open between the family members. Whenever discord or tension arose within the home, Tonya was typically the member who brought about resolution and harmony. These traits served Tonya well in her adult life and, along with her wit, outgoing personality, and understanding of others, drew the admiration of many who knew her.

      During her high school years, Tonya responded enthusiastically to any new project and was regularly in search of one adventure after another. She graduated from Amarillo High School in 1982. Tonya was a very good student, and generally did well in her courses. Tonya absorbed as much as she could from all of her teachers and was consistently able to tackle conceptual and abstract problems, using her imagination to master her assignments. For Tonya, school often became just an extension of playtime, thanks to her ability to turn just about anything into a game. Classmates considered Tonya a good listener, knowing that when necessary, they could go to her to discuss just about anything. Cosmotology License.

      With a talent for making acquaintances easily which in turn brought her an endless stream of friends, Tonya was very sociable and could blend without effort into any social group. Assertive and outgoing, Tonya was easy to know and demonstrated a deep concern for others. She always seemed aware of what was going on with people around her and throughout her life she made many, many friends. While growing up, some of her best friends were Dena Hair and Jackie Bonner. Later in life, she remained friends with Dena Hair and Jackie Bonner.

       Tonya's skill at “building bridges” played an important role in her ability to make her new family happy. Tonya was tenderhearted and sensitive, qualities that served her well in helping to nurture her family.

      Tonya was a natural and creative parent who was willing to provide her family with all sorts of new and interesting experiences. For Tonya, parenting was a particularly enjoyable and pleasurable part of her life. Every activity, from chores to bedtime routines, became a game in the Watkins home. Tonya's skill at understanding her children's feelings, her sensitivity to their needs, and her gift for gentle persuasion enabled her to find novel solutions to any problem or situation that might crop up. Tonya was blessed with one child: her son, Christopher.

      Tonya was uplifted by new ideas and was excited by life’s possibilities, traits that made her an exceptional worker. Her primary occupation was apartment manager. She was employed for Downtown Apartments. Tonya was enterprising, inventive and working against deadlines seemed to energize her. Tonya had the uncanny ability to identify a win/win solution to just about any problem, possibly because of her gift for insight. Tonya's fellow workers saw her as a supporter and a mentor.

      Because Tonya loved to have a broad variety of activities in her life, she took advantage of the opportunity to pursue numerous hobbies. Her favorite pursuits were shopping and being with friends. Tonya had a knack for being able to multi-task in order to create time for all of her favorite pastimes. However, Tonya's ever-present concern for others always took precedent.

      Tonya's love of improvising in her daily life was a perfect fit for her enjoyment of traveling. Her favorite vacations were ones that were not planned. Traveling in a casual manor fit her personality well. Excited about seeing changing scenery and constantly looking for the enjoyment life could offer, Tonya took her vacations seriously, well, as seriously as she possibly could. Favorite vacations included Las Vegas, Nevada.

      Tonya was a lover of animals and cherished her pets. Shaveka, was a best friend for 11 1/2 years. Her family was rounded out by her several bulldogs.

      Tonya Watkins passed away on July 7, 2018 at Amarillo, Texas. She is survived by her brother Todd, and several other loving family members; and dear friends. Services were held at Memorial Park Funeral Home Chapel of Memories.

      There was always a certain style and inventiveness to Tonya. She was a dynamic, self-expressive person who was forever looking to celebrate the endless possibilities life had to offer. She had a knack for being clever, creative and witty, and for others, was a joy to be around. While she was often fiercely independent, it seemed as if many others looked to Tonya Watkins for inspiration, leadership, wisdom and even courage. Tonya was always more than willing to share life’s experiences with her loved ones.