Cover photo for Lester Bunyan Watson, Jr.'s Obituary
Lester Bunyan Watson, Jr. Profile Photo

Lester Bunyan Watson, Jr.

March 12, 1927 — December 28, 2023

Lester Bunyan Watson, Jr.

On Thursday, December 28, 2023 Lester B. Watson, age 96, didn't achieve his daily two mile walk as he was called to walk through the Pearly Gates of Heaven. He was born March 12, 1927 in Perry, Georgia to Lester B. Watson, Sr. and Edith F. Watson. The family grew with the birth of Lester's brother, Kenneth A. Watson. The small family moved to Americus, Georgia where Lester graduated from Americus High School in 1945.

 

Shortly thereafter, and because of World War II, Lester was drafted into the United States Army and was promptly dispatched to Germany. Thankfully the war was being won by global allies and Lester returned to Georgia unscathed. Lester was the proud recipient of the Army Good Conduct Medal, the European-African-Middle Eastern Campaign Medal, the World War II Victory Medal, and the Army of Occupation Medal. He was very proud to call himself a WWII veteran and often wore a ball cap indicating his service. It surprised him, but warmed his heart, when strangers offered their handshake and thanked him for his service. Lester continued to live in Americus after high school but decided better opportunities were awaiting him in Albany, so he and his wife Dot packed up and moved. They purchased their forever home in East Albany on the Flint River.

 

Lester was employed by the Albany Logistics Marine Base for 30 years, moving up the supervisory ranks. He was married to Dorothy (Dot) Durham Watson from 1947 until her death in 1995. Dot was a co-owner of an Albany florist shop and Saturdays often found Lester helping with floral deliveries, although he'd much rather have been fishing down on his dock.

 

Lester was a long-time member and benefactor of Morningside Methodist Church and the National Association of Retired Federal Employees (NARFE). He was also a Master Mason with the Daugherty County Lodge 591. Most Friday mornings would find Lester and his ROMEO Club buddies enjoying breakfast in an Albany restaurant. Those Retired Old Men Eating Out (ROMEO) buddies not only enjoyed breakfast but they liked to one-up the other ROMEOs with their tall tales of nonsense. Lester was a kind and generous man - just ask any of the ROMEO restaurant servers.

 

In 1997, Lester met Marilyn Dye Smith and as they say…The rest is history. They never married but Lester and Marilyn were devoted to one another and Lester became a welcome member of Marilyn's family (three children, their mates, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren). Lester and Marilyn embarked on many cruises to the Caribbean, the Panama Canal, Alaska, Hawaii, New England, Canada.  Once Marilyn's daughter and son-in-law, Donna Dye and Gary Sharpe, retired the four of them travelled throughout the southern and eastern United States…South and Central Florida, Arkansas, North Georgia, Coastal Georgia, East Tennessee, West Tennessee, Kentucky, South Carolina, North Carolina Outer Banks, Virginia, West Virginia, Pennsylvania, New York. During these trips, Lester would often comment "I never would have been here without you people."

 

Lester B. Watson, Jr. was pre-deceased by his parents, Lester and Edith Watson, and his wife, Dot and his brother Kenneth Watson of Huntsville, Alabama. Lester's memorial service will be held at Mathews Funeral Home, 3206 Gillionville Road, Albany on Wednesday, January 3, 2024. The family will receive visitors at 10:30 with the service beginning at 11:00. A private interment will be held that afternoon in Americus, Georgia.

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Wednesday, January 3, 2024

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