Cecil A. Watson was born April 1, 1931, on a farm near Bathgate, ND, the son of Bruce and Birdie (Bill) Watson. He died Friday, March 4, 2022, at the age of 90. He attended Ormley rural school for four years and graduated from Cavalier High School in 1949 and was the last surviving male of that class. He served in the US Navy as an aviation electronics technician and radioman on a flight crew from 1952 to 1956. Cecil received a Masters degree in engineering from NDSU, he taught at NDSU two years before returning to the farm near Bathgate, ND. While farming he served on the ND Wheat Commission for twelve years and was chairman of the national wheat organization US Wheat Associates promoting the use of ND and US wheat around the world. He received the ND governors Award of Excellence for traveling to 45 countries promoting wheat. He was a charter member of the Pembina County Historical Society and was president for several years. He also taught science at Neche High School for ten years. He held a private pilots license earned while he was in college in Fargo. He was a member of the Laverne J. Thompson Post 11 American Legion.
On September 6, 1952, he married his high school sweetheart Marilyn Eastman, in Holly Springs, Mississippi. Marilyn passed away on April 17, 2010. On February 13, 2013, he exchanged vows with Pat Shipp, a high school friend, in Santa Clarita, CA. Pat passed away July 10, 2020.
Survivors include four sons: Daryl (Noel) Watson, Cavalier, ND; Charles (Sheryl) Watson, Bathgate, ND; Jerome (Jennifer) Watson, Farmington, MO; and Thomas Watson, Tempe, AZ. Grandchildren: Nicholas (Becky) Watson , Joseph Watson, Grand Forks, ND; Jordan (Natasha) Watson, Alex Watson, Cavalier, ND; Brandon Watson, Bathgate, ND; Zachary (Jackie) Watson, Doe Run, MO; Ben (Amber) Watson, Freeport, FL; Whitney Watson, Park Hills, MO; Brianna (Sam) Zozaya, Queen Creek, AZ; Ashlan (Daniel) Arenas, Hutto, TX. Great-grandchildren: Rylee, Reegan, Amaya, Meelah, Adrianna, Ellie, Kiera, Kallie, Teagen, Quinncy, Beau, Mila, Jackson, Samuel, Olivia and Wilder; Siblings: sisters, Betsy Lawrence, Cavalier ND; Muriel Devitt, Buffalo, MN; Beverly Guimont (Dave), Elk River, MN; and brother, Glenn Watson, Cavalier, ND. Sisters-in-law: Margit Eastman, Mayville, ND; Darlene Watson, Cavalier, ND; Pat’s daughters Christy and Cindy and families, and many nieces and nephews.
He was a member of Cavalier Baptist Church and served on the church board for many years. He put his trust in Jesus as his savior when he was 12 years old. His favorite Bible verses were Ephesians 2 verses 8 and 9. Missions were important to him, and he served on the mission committee of the church for over 40 years. He was giving support to 11 missionary families, some for over 50 years.
Preceding him in death were his parents; wives, Marilyn and Pat; sister, Frances; brother, Dale; great-grandson, Conner; sister-in-law, Jan Watson; brothers-in-law: Rev. Wayne Lawrence, Ray Devitt and Ken Eastman.
Written by Cecil A. Watson
Memorial service will be held Thursday, March 10, 2022, at 10:00 a.m. at the Cavalier Baptist Church, Cavalier, ND. Visitation will be held Wednesday, March 9, 2022, from 5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. at the church.