R. Duane Watson

Published 2:07 pm Tuesday, July 16, 2019

R. Duane Watson

July 15, 2019

  1. Duane Watson, 67, of Bainbridge, Ga., passed away Monday, July 15, 2019.

The memorial service will be held at 10 a.m. on Thursday, July 18, 2019 at Calvary Baptist Church with Rev. John Woodrum and Rev. Stephen Webb officiating.

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The family will receive friends immediately following the service. Online visitors may sign the guest register at www.iveyfuneral.com. Memorial donations may be made to: Decatur County Family Connection/Ronnie Burke, P. O. Box 990, Bainbridge, GA 39818; The Lewis Hall Singletary Oncology Center, 919 S. Broad Street, Thomasville, GA 31792; or Atlanta Ronald McDonald House Charities, 795 Gatewood Road, NE, Atlanta, GA 30329.

Ralph Duane Watson was born April 21, 1952, in San Antonio, Texas, the son of Ralph and Mary Hanna Watson. He graduated from Avondale High School and later earned an Associates Degree from Dekalb Community College. Duane married Deborah Ann Watkins in 1972. In 1975 they moved to Decatur County to pursue Duane’s passion for agriculture. He served as Relationship Manager at Southwest Georgia Farm Credit for the past 14 years. Duane was a member of First United Methodist Church.

Duane Watson had a strong presence. His above average stature and of course, his signature red truck, made folks take notice. He commanded attention in the room with his gentle spirit and love for others. Duane reveled in the vastness of the sky and loved everything about airplanes. (Guns were a sideline hobby especially after her realized what a good shot Deborah is.) Duane enjoyed fishing and serving up his catch to friends and family at what he considered an old fashioned fish fry. Many have said, “Food is the way to a man’s heart”; Duane believed food was the common ground of conversation and the first step into a lifelong relationship. Big Daddy loved well and was well loved.


Survivors include his wife of 47 years, Deborah Watson; his children, Dayna Watson of Birmingham, Ala., Deanne Strong and her husband, D.J., of Bainbridge, and Douglas Watson and his wife, Nicola, of Hannatown; his mother, Mary Hanna Watson of Dahlonega; his sister, Debbie DeLong and her husband, Charles, also of Dahlonega; his grandchildren, Sarah Joe, Emma, Malia, Demetric and Demetria; and his great-grandson, Sawyer. Duane was preceded in death by his father, Dr. Ralph Watson.