September 14, 1924 – August 6, 2019
Marydel Hawkins Watkins was born to Grace and H. S. Hawkins Sept. 14, 1924 in Meadow, Texas. She graduated from Lubbock High School when she was 15 and began her studies at Texas Tech the September following. World War II interrupted her education as she married Robert Burgin Watkins in 1942, following his enlistment in the Army Air Corps.
Marydel resumed her education at Tech after the war’s end, completing her degree in Home Economics. Burgin’s continuing his education at Vanderbilt took them to Nashville, Tennessee for two years. On their return to Texas Burgin began his career as a Methodist minister, and Marydel settled into the life of a minister’s wife. She continued in this role throughout Burgin’s ministerial career while serving churches in Lubbock, Lockney, Pampa, Stamford, Childress, and Midland. Two years were in Denver, Colorado while Burgin completed his doctorate.
Between 1953 and 1968 Marydel taught elementary school and loved her students in the various communities in which they lived. Burgin and Marydel raised two children, Jim and Mary Lou. After Burgin’s sudden death in 1974, Marydel resumed her teaching career in Midland until her retirement in 1986. She enjoyed traveling throughout the United States and also internationally.
In 2014, Marydel moved to New Braunfels, Texas to be close to her daughter and son-in-law and much closer to most of her grandchildren and great grandchildren. She often remarked that she loved living in South Texas and should have moved many years sooner. Her final years were happily spent being surrounded by loved ones and many new friends. Marydel passed from this life August 6, 2019.
A graveside service will take place at Resthaven Cemetery in Lubbock, Texas on August 17 at 11 am. Memorial service will follow at St.John’s United Methodist Church, Lubbock, Texas at 1 pm.
Marydel is survived by her children and their spouses, Jim and Nina Watkins and Dan and Mary Lou Brown, grandchildren and spouses Jay Watkins, Scott and Eni Watkins, Aaron Ward and Anna McCourt, Cara and Shaun Lazenby, Natalie Brown, and Josh and Laura Brown. She is also survived by six great grandchildren Kaitlyn Brown, Stella Ward, Sophie Lazenby, Alex Lazenby, Ellie Brown, and Adria Brown.
The family would like to thank the entire Eden Hill family and the Hope Hospice organization, both of New Braunfels, for providing loving companionship and care during Marydel’s final years. Person’s interested in contributing in her memory would be directed to the Watkins Scholarship Fund established in memory of Burgin Watkins at St. Luke’s United Methodist Church, 3011 Kansas Ave., Midland, Texas 79701.
Watkins Scholarship Fund
In Memory of Burgin Watkins at St. Luke's United Methodist Church 3011 Kansas Ave. , Midland, Texas 79701
- Graveside Service Saturday, August 17, 2019
- Memorial Service Saturday, August 17, 2019