Gerald Watson

Obituary of Gerald Afton Watson

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CLINTON - Gerald A. (Bear) Watson passed away April 26, 2024, at home with his family by his

side. He was born in Clinton on March 7, 1939, the son of Myron and Junita (Salisbury) Watson.

He attended Clinton High School, graduating in 1957. He enlisted in the U.S Navy and following

his graduation, he served a total of six years, most memorably on the aircraft carrier USS

Tarawa. He was proud of his military service and the U.S. Flag.


After an honorable discharge, he attended Keene State College, graduating with a B.S. in

Industrial Education in 1963. He began his career at Lawrence High School and taught Industrial

Arts, retiring as Department Head after 35 years. He impacted many kids during his teaching

career, encouraging them with his quiet manner. He was delighted when former students

would visit and talk about their careers and families.


He married Ruth Ann Bowen on September 3, 1960, and together they raised four children.

During the summers, he spent much of his time doing renovations and carpentry type work,

returning each night to the family camp at Unity Pond, where they shared many years of

swimming, boating, fishing, sailing, berry picking, water-skiing and always ended the day with a

good meal.


For many years, Bear and Ruth sailed on their friends Bill and Julie Alexander’s schooner

Timberwind each summer. A wonderful group of teacher friends enjoyed sailing the coast of

Maine and creating lasting memories each year.


Bear loved being in the woods. He was particularly fond of Canaan camp, where he and his

brother David spent many happy times with their parents and grandparents. In later years, his

own kids shared their own memories of hunting, walking in the woods and cutting wood with

their dad at Canaan camp.


Bear was a longtime member of the Clinton Lions Club, serving in all positions including King

Lion. He was involved in many activities including mechanical pulls, and was proud to be a

member of a four-generation Lion family.


There was nothing Bear could not build or repair. He once bought a bushel basket of parts that

he built into a snowmobile, Old Yeller. He made Lincoln logs and ice traps as Christmas presents

for his kids. Body work, plumbing, electrical work, welding, sheet metal and foundry work, auto

repairs, machining, rebuilding a 1964 Ford automobile and his 1952 Ford tractor. He restored a

1929 Ford Model A and loved driving it on the back roads of Maine with family in the rumble

seat. You name it, he could do it.


Moosehead Lake held a special place in Bear’s heart. From Lily Bay to Rockwood, he caught

many fish and enjoyed many cherished family times. He loved to fish, not catch, and release,

but catch and eat, enjoying every bite. In his later years, he loved special times on the boat,

trips to Pebble Beach, and time spent on the porch on the Moose River.


After retirement, Ruth and Bear bought a condo in Gulfport, Florida and became snowbirds. He

loved having the children and grandchildren visit. He took them to his favorite places in Florida,

including his favorite all-you-can-eat buffets. His condo was the meeting place for his Florida

friends, where everyone would come and visit for a spell.


Bear had a special place in his heart for dogs. He loved dogs his entire life, especially Bonkers

and his grand-dog Bo who was by his side until his final day.


Most of all, Bear loved his family with his entire heart and soul. He loved his wife dearly, he was

so proud of his children, he adored his grandchildren, and his great grandchildren were the

icing on the cake of his life.


Bear is predeceased by his parents and his brother David.


He is survived by his wife Ruth, children Michael (Jody) Watson, Mark (Kim) Watson, Matt

(LeeAnn) Watson, Melissa (Rod) Parlin, grandchildren Rachel Watson, Katie Medina, Tashia

Watson, Hannah Parlin, Taylor Nutting, Hallee Parlin, Brielle Watson, Brandon Watson, great-

grandchildren Parker Rose, Avery, Jackson, Molly, and Harriet. He is also survived by many

other loving family members and close cherished friends.


A celebration of life will be held on Sunday, May 19 th from 12:00 – 2:00 p.m. at Brown Memorial

United Methodist Church Fellowship Hall, 36 Church Street, Clinton Maine. A private graveside

service will be held immediately following for the family.


Arrangements by Direct Cremation of Maine in Belfast.


The family wishes to thank Gentiva Hospice, especially Janice Scott, who was so compassionate

to Bear and to the family during his last days.


In lieu of flowers, please do a kind deed for someone in honor of Bear.

A Memorial Tree was planted for Gerald
We are deeply sorry for your loss ~ the staff at Direct Cremation of Maine
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Gerald Watson

In Loving Memory

Gerald Watson

1939 - 2024

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