OBITUARY

Clifford D Watson

November 3, 1937January 17, 2020
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Retired Master Sgt. Clifford Dale Watson, 82, of Killeen, TX, entered heavens gates on January 17, 2020. Funeral services will be on Monday, January 27, 2020 at 1130 AM in the Crawford-Bowers Funeral Home Chapel in Killeen.

Cliff was born on November 3, 1937 to Gus and Beulah Watson in Cave City, Arkansas. Cliff played baseball and football in high school. He graduated from Monette High School in Monette, Arkansas in 1956 and enlisted in the United States Army in 1957.

In 1955, Cliff met Sherry Ann Hallett. They were married on June 28, 1959 in Central Baptist Church in Jonesboro, Arkansas. While stationed in Germany, Cliff and his wife Sherry welcomed their daughter, Stacie Leigh.

Cliff was a devoted husband as well as a devoted father—whenever the Cowboys would play, the whole family would be watching and rooting for them. He taught his daughter to fish as well as archery – he would play games like “Operation” and was known to take over her Spirograph on occasion.

He retired from the Army in 1987 and he and his wife travelled around the great state of Texas. He worked at Killeen Propane from 1987 to 2003 when the business was sold. He was offered a job by Sledge Smith of Smith and Smith Propane and Hardware in 2003 and was the Hardware Propane Manager until his death.

In 1989 his name was changed to “Poppy” when his first granddaughter, Stephanie Leigh, was born. His second granddaughter, Reba Ann, was born in 1997. He instructed them in the fine art of fishing, as well. On September 3, 2015, he became a great-grandfather to Rendetta Marie and on October 16, 2017, his great-grandson Kirian was born. He was a devoted great-grandfather to these two, who proceeded to change his name from Poppy to Pop.

He was proceeded in death by his parents. Cliff, or as his granddaughter Reba called him, Clifton, was a joy to his family and adored his grandchildren and great-grandchildren. He is survived by his wife, daughter, two granddaughters, great-granddaughter and 1 great-grandson.

The family will receive friends at the funeral home on Sunday, January 26, 2020 from 6-9 PM. Burial with military honors will be on Tuesday, January 28, 2020 at 1 PM at Central Texas State Veterans Cemetery.

Services

  • Visitation

    Sunday, January 26, 2020

  • Celebration of Life

    Monday, January 27, 2020

  • Burial @ Central Texas State Veterans Cemetery

    Tuesday, January 28, 2020

Memories

Clifford D Watson

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Gisela Ryan-Bunger

January 24, 2020

To the Watson Family, I am so sorry on the loss of Cliff. He was a kind man and a good neighbor. May the Lord give you strength and comfort during this difficult time. Rest in peace Mr. Watson.

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Biography

      When someone is identified as a natural leader, certain images come to mind. First thoughts are of a no-nonsense, tough-minded, dedicated and disciplined person. This description accurately fits Clifford D Watson who was indeed a born manager. He will be remembered as being highly organized, practical and realistic. He was a person who always carried a strong sense of duty with him throughout his life. Possessed with traditional “old school” morals, Clifford was an individual who clearly communicated to those around him just who he was and what he was all about. Everyone acquainted with Clifford knew him as a well-respected man who was a stable force in his community.

      Clifford was born on November 3, 1937 at at home in Cave City, Arkansas. His parents were Gus and Beulah Watson. Clifford was raised in Black Oak Arkansas and Monette, Arkansas. Even as a youngster, Clifford learned to be objective and decisive. His faith in the principles of authority and dependability was something that he carried with him throughout his life.

      As a young boy, Clifford was able to put his natural abilities to work. He was a bit like the sergeant of the family, helping to make sure that the others did what they should do and that they avoided those things they weren’t supposed to. In other words, he liked to organize and direct. Clifford was raised with two siblings. He had two younger sisters, Bonnie and Una Dale. Clifford had an inborn appreciation for the order in the family, allowing for the oldest members to be the most respected and to take on the most responsibility. For Clifford, this was a natural order of life, one he gladly embraced.

      Clifford's matter-of-fact attitude about most things was developed during his childhood. As a young boy, Clifford enjoyed being part of teams, and organizations and groups of other kids who shared similar interests. Clifford took part in baseball and football. In his spare time he liked hunting, fishing, photography and archery.

      In school, Clifford was as close to being a model student as one could possibly imagine. He sought to achieve perfect attendance in all of his classes. He would eagerly complete his homework, and often put in extra study time when he felt it was necessary. A logical and focused thinker, Clifford was always good at following directions and meeting his schedules, whether they were set by his teachers or were self-imposed. Clifford’s personal motto could well have been, “Do it right the first time.” He graduated from Monette High School in 1956. He enjoyed some courses more than others, having favorite classes and teachers.

      Clifford’s practical work ethic carried over into his college years. His logical mind permitted him to work hard without succumbing to the usual distractions of college life. He would tackle an assignment and work through it before moving onto the next project. Clifford’s orderly nature gave way to establishing personal study habits and procedures that not only helped him stay on track but often put him ahead of schedule. When Clifford saw the need or benefit, he would willingly take on the extra assignment or even attend extra classes in order to learn more and become a better student. He had to drop out due to the Vietnam War. His favorite courses were in Law (Criminal Law).

      Clifford was sociable and approachable. Because he was always so straightforward in how he approached relationships, friends and family knew that what they saw was always what they got. He enjoyed the camaraderie of being with a group of friends. When Clifford was a member of a group, his interaction worked to keep the others grounded. He wasn’t afraid to confront his friends and, when necessary, he challenged them to stick to the task at hand. Those close to Clifford came to expect his high standards of performance. While growing up, some of his best friends were Danny and Rocky. Later in life in addition to Danny and Rocky, he became friends with Jim Santos, Dennis Dillan.

      An objective and conscientious individual, Clifford reveled in the security of his family. On June 28, 1959 Clifford exchanged wedding vows with Sherry Ann Hallett at the Central Baptist Church of Jonesboro, Arkansas. One of Clifford’s most endearing qualities was his uncanny ability to remember important dates and anniversaries, and his unending enthusiasm for organizing a celebration for his family and friends.

      Clifford was ever watchful of his children. He worried about them and was deeply concerned for their development as they grew up. He maintained a firm hand in their upbringing. Clifford would give his stamp of approval to their requests, as long as he could see how they might benefit. He also had the ability to enforce the rules as needed to ensure that his children were properly raised. Clifford and Sherry were blessed with one, daughter Stacie Leigh. They were also blessed with two granddaughters, Stephanie and Reba.

      Being a hard worker who praised efficiency, Clifford was always striving to make improvements where they were necessary. He was able to analyze situations and problems, keeping everything and everyone on track. An excellent project supervisor, Clifford was a person who could quickly make decisions based on the information available. He worked cooperatively and expected the same from his colleagues. In both his personal and professional environments, Clifford upheld his standards. His primary occupation was member of the US Army. He was employed for 30 years in the US Army. Clifford was a team player who certainly lived out the motto of “give me a job, and I will get it done.”

      Clifford was an Army Veteran. His sense of duty helped lead him into the military where his understanding of rank, his willingness to abide by rules and regulations and his desire to follow orders was admired by his fellow service men and women. He was stationed at Fort Hood, Texas, Korea, Vietnam, and twice in Germany. Clifford saw action for Vietnam. Through his hard work and dedication, he achieved the rank of MSGT. He received several awards recognizing his for his heroism, including a (9) Good Conduct, Expert Rifle and Soldier of the Month.

      Clifford approached his leisure time in the same manner that he approached his life. A person who enjoyed being neat and orderly and one who understood the nature of things, he appreciated the hours he was able to devote to his various hobbies. His favorite pursuits were hunting, fishing, and he was an avid Dallas Cowboy fan (win or lose). Clifford was content to enjoy his favorite pastimes alone but was also willing to share his interests with others.

      Playing by the rules was a natural thing for Clifford to do in life and that carried over to his enjoyment of sports. In high school, Clifford played baseball, football and basketball. Recreational sports included basketball and baseball. He also was something of a sports fan and enjoyed watching his favorite events whenever he got the opportunity. Tops on his list were football, basketball and Olympic baseball.

      Being generous with his time and energy, Clifford liked to belong to a variety of groups and organizations. He was a vocal leader who enjoyed being a part of things. His desire to uphold traditions and his ability to take charge of any type of project made him a tremendous asset. Throughout his later years, Clifford was an active member of the VFW, American Leagion and NRA.

      A civic-minded person, Clifford was usually ready to jump in and help with community activities. He was the type of person who could masterfully organize events and projects and then see to it that they were run in an efficient and timely manner. Politically, Clifford was a Republican. During these years, Clifford applied his analytical intellect to problem solving and so was an asset on most committees.

      Faith was important to Clifford. He held high moral standards and was worried about the moral decay he saw around him. For that reason he held deep spiritual beliefs that he was willing to share. He was a member of several Baptist Churches in the states and overseas. During that time, he ran the soundboards in three churches.

      As someone who placed a high value on showing gratitude, Clifford could graciously accept a “thank you” extended to him by those he helped. However, individual recognition wasn’t a motivating force for Clifford; rather, when he saw that there was a need to get something done, he was more than willing to give his time and energy in order to see it accomplished. Some of his most prestigious awards included the Good Conduct Medal (9 times), Soldier of the Month (1960), Fort Hood Archery Champion- 10 yr, USAR Champ Archery in Germany- 1 year.

      When it came time to travel or take a vacation, Clifford used his scheduling expertise to make sure everyone and everything was ready to go. That also meant that he made certain no single person was overworked in putting the trip together. Clifford had a knack for making sure that everyone who was involved had their specific tasks and that those tasks were completed. Favorite vacations included two river cruises, traveling Texas all summer and European tours.

      Clifford was a lover of animals and cherished his pets. One of Clifford’s favorites was a terrier dog named Doolittle. His family was rounded out by his other dog, Sundance.

      When Clifford’s retirement finally arrived in 1987, he was well prepared. He used his critical evaluation skills to make sure that every detail had been preplanned and attended to. His new life involved relocating to Killeen, Texas. In retirement, he found new pleasure in his Church, learning computer skills, his weather station and photography. In many ways, Clifford loved retirement. It provided him with the opportunity to catch up with his friends, attend functions and group outings, and tackle new interesting activities.

      Clifford passed away on January 17, 2020 at Darnell Army Hospital, Fort Hood, Texas. He is survived by his wife, Sherry; daughter, Stacie; two granddaughters, Reba and Stephanie; great-granddaughter, Rendetta and great-grandson, Kirian. Services were held at Crawford-Bowers Funeral Home, Killeen, Texas. Clifford was laid to rest in Central Texas State Veterans Cemetery, Killeen, Texas.

      All who knew him would agree that Clifford was a pillar of the community. He lived his life with his feet firmly on the ground. He had a strong work ethic, was pragmatic in his thoughts and acts, and constantly sought the means for self-improvement. He was willing to share his ideas and knowledge for the benefit of others, so that they could accomplish more in their lives. Clifford D Watson did his best to ensure that his family, friends, loved ones, co-workers, and everyone whose life he touched was given the chance to become a better person.

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