Lonnie  Watson
Service for Lonnie Watson, 81, of Cleburne, will be conducted at 11:00 A.M., Saturday, November 9, 2019, in the Calvary Baptist Church in Cleburne. Burial will be 11:30 A.M., Tuesday, November 12, 2019 in the DFW National Cemetery. Visitation will be 6-8:00 P.M. Friday, November 8, 2019 at the funeral home. Pallbearers will be Paul Elkins, Nelson Rochelle, Love Fantroy, Robert Clay, Dale Hannah and Reginald Cleveland. Honorary pallbearers will be Sgt. Major Wayman Hemphill, Albert Rheams, Roderick Cleveland, Reimann Davis, Christopher Applegate, Don Grover, Tommy Franklin and Roger Harman.
Lonnie Watson passed away Saturday, November 2, 2019 in Fort Worth. He was born May 15, 1938 in Thomastown, Louisiana to Dennis and Sallie (Claiborne) Watson. Lonnie married Annie Ruth McKinnon on June 13, 1966 in Abilene. He graduated as Salutatorian from Thomastown High School in Thomastown, Louisiana; received a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Agronomy from Southern University in Baton Rouge, Louisiana and an Associate Degree in Personnel Management from Odessa College in Odessa, Texas.
Lonnie also had an extensive military career, serving in the United States Army, 1963-1965 and United States Army Reserve 1965-1994. He was a First Sergeant for 6 years; Operation Sergeant Major for 7 years; Battalion Sergeant Major for 4 years and Brigade Command Sergeant Major for 12 years.
Lonnie was the owner and operator of Watson and Son, Inc. in Cleburne from 1984 to the present and was awarded Chamber of Commerce Business of the Year. Lonnie worked as a Soil Scientist and Conservationist for the Soil Conservation Service from 1974-1994 in Cleburne. He was the first African-American hired by the Department of Agriculture to become a Soil Scientist. Lonnie served on the Mount St. Helens Volcanic Disaster Rescue Program Team as Lead Conservationist, Equal Employment Opportunity Commission Counselor, Cleburne State Park Nature Trail as Lead Developer, Community Soil Conservation Calendar Creator and FFA Soil and Land Judging Contest as Chairman and Judge.
Lonnie was very active in his community, serving in several positions; he was appointed by Governor George W. Bush as Texas Workforce Commissioner, Board Member of Members Credit Union, Board of Directors for Texas Health Resources Cleburne, Board of Trustee for the Cleburne Independent School District, City Councilman for the City of Cleburne, Planning and Zoning Committee Member (2 terms) for the City of Cleburne, Board of Directors for the Cleburne Chamber of Commerce, President of Cleburne Christian Businessmen, Board Member of Cleburne Prayer Breakfast Club, First African-American Johnson County Grand Jury Foreman, President of Cleburne Crime Stoppers, Board of Directors of Cleburne Evening Kiwanis Club, Board of Directors of United Way, Board of Directors for the City of Cleburne Library Committee, President of Yellow Jacket Booster Club (2 terms), President/Commissioner and Coach of Cleburne Baseball Association, Board of Director, Coach and Referee (6 terms) for Cleburne Soccer Association, Scout Master (2 terms) for the Cub Scouts of America Troop #1224, Volunteer for Camp Fire, Speaker, Mentor and Volunteer for Future Farmers of America and Volunteer for the 4-H Club.
Lonnie was also very active in his church, First Mount Zion Missionary Baptist Church of Cleburne, where he served as Deacon, Brotherhood Group President, Finance Officer , President of the Choir and a member of the Male Chorus.
Lonnie is survived by his wife of 53 years, Annie Watson of Cleburne; daughter, Sabrina Watson of Burleson; son, Barrett Watson of Fort Worth; grandchildren, Reginald Richardson and Jhamir Richardson; sisters, Vera Davis and Geraldine Shears both of Tallulah, Louisiana, special friend, Albert Rheams, numerous nephews and a host of other relatives and friends.
Published on November 6, 2019


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Showing 10 of 9 posts

Paul Haley
Nov 11, 2019
Great man that will be missed by many.May he rest in peace.
Nina Gatlin
Nov 10, 2019
" Exactly!" He said, almost every time he came in to David's Inc. office. Thank you, Mr. Watson.
Kathy Key
Nov 09, 2019
Each week when Lonnie delivered fresh door mats to my State Farm Agency he always had a smile and spoke encouraging words.
Jean Moss
Nov 09, 2019
Thinking back to Lonny's time serving on the City Council. Faithful servant will be remembered and dearly missed!
Chris Gallop
Nov 08, 2019
My favorite memory of Mr. Watson was how he never left the field, whether winning or losing, without personally standing in the center of the field and shaking each kids hand and telling them “good game,” “get ‘em next time,” or“keep your head up.” To him, it wasn’t about winning. It was always about sportsmanship and encouragement. He was an incredible influence in our community and will be greatly missed.
Clinton & Norma Epps
Nov 08, 2019
Sending our Prayers, Love and Deepest Sympathy to The Family. Earth has no Sorrow, Heaven cannot Heal. Praying GOD Grants You Peace that Surpasses All Understanding.
Antione and Shaniqua Young
Nov 07, 2019
We are saddened by your loss. Our prayer is that God will comfort you all in this season. Lonnie Watson lived life well and we pray that the many memories of his life and legacy are remembered and celebrated for years to come.
O'Lain Nesby
Nov 07, 2019
We send our condolence to you and the family. In reading the obituary, I know Deacon Watson was a loved and admired person showering in all of God's Blessings given him. What a beautiful time to be called home, the month of November. A month that we share and celebrate family love together. He showed a lot of love to serve in all that he did throughout his life time. Surely he was a man to be thankful for. May you, Sis. Watson, Sabrina and Barrett stay strong in Christ and continue to do and serve where God has placed you.

Love, O'Lain, Darryl, Cherie, Christi and Chantelle
I'm and pearl richard
Nov 06, 2019
We are very sorry for your loss. Please know that all of you are in our thoughts and prayers.