Richard Watson – Son of Merle, Grandson of Doc and Rosa Lee, Passes Away Monday

Published Tuesday, June 2, 2015 at 9:48 am
Richard Watson at the MusicFest 'n Sugar Grove - Photo by Lonnie Webster

Richard Watson at the MusicFest ‘n Sugar Grove – Photo by Lonnie Webster

By Jesse Wood

Richard Watson, the grandson of musical icon, Doc Watson, and son of another great musician, the late Merle Watson, passed away on Monday evening at the age of 48.

Amber Herman, a media spokesperson for MerleFest, which is named after Merle Watson, said that MerleFest Director Ted Hagaman sent out an email at 9:15 p.m. on Monday letting her and others know that he died.

Judy McDonough, a publicist for MerleFest, said that Hagaman released a statement of condolence on behalf of the festival this morning and that she isn’t sure yet who will be speaking on behalf of the Watson family.

On Tuesday morning, Hagaman released this statement:

“The entire MerleFest family was saddened to learn of the passing of Richard Watson.  Richard has been a fixture at MerleFest for many years, helping to carry on the Watson legacy.  He was a talented musician and he will be missed.”

A fine musician in his own right and one that mastered his father’s blues guitar style, Richard performed some with his father up until Merle’s passing in 1985 and with his grandfather, Doc, at MerleFest and other venues from 1991 until Doc’s death in 2012, according to a bio on the MerleFest website.

“I could retire, but my grandson Richard plays a good blues guitar. One of the most gratifying things that happened to me after Merle left is the fact that Merle’s son Richard started playing the guitar,” Doc once said.

“He has a job he has to hold down and a family to look after… but he loves the music with a passion. I’m proud of him for two reasons. He’s got a wonderful personality, just like his dad had. He loves his family and he loves me and his mam’ma (RosaLee) awful good. The other reason is that he’s a fine musician and he’s finally got over stage fright. He has a lot of Merle’s attributes.”

Funeral services for Richard Eddy Watson will be conducted Thursday afternoon, June 4, 2015 at 2 p.m. at Laurel Springs Baptist Church. The body will lie in state, at the church, from noon until 2:00 p.m. Officiating will be Reverend Rick Cornejo and Pastor Tim Lynch. Burial will follow in the Doc and Merle Watson Family Cemetery.

The family will receive friends Thursday afternoon, from 12:00 until 1:30, at the church, prior to the service.

In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to the Tantem Merle Webb Trust, in care of Bank of America, 1800 Blowing Rock Road, Boone, North Carolina 28607. Online condolences may be sent to the Watson family at www.hamptonfuneralnc.com.

Richard Watson’s obituary from Hampton Funeral Service:

Richard Watson (July 20, 1966 – June 1, 2015)

Richard Eddy Watson, 48, of Holly Hills, Boone, passed away Monday, June 1, 2015 at his residence.

Richard was born July 20, 1966 in Watauga County, the son of Geneva Sarah Greene Watson Hennessee and the late Eddy Merle Watson. He was an accomplished musician, performing often with his grandfather, the legendary Doc Watson.

Richard is survived by his wife, Annette Greene Watson of the home; one daughter Candis Watson Webb and husband Jesse of Newland; one grandson Tantem Webb of Newland; his mother Geneva Hennessee and step-father David Hennessee of Deep Gap; one sister, Karen Watson Norris and companion Troy Boyer of Fleetwood; aunt Nancy Watson of Deep Gap; aunt and uncle Charles and Betty Church of Gastonia; one brother-in-law, Chris Greene of Boone; and his mother-in-law, Pat Greene of Boone. He is also survived by a number of nieces and nephews.

In addition to his father, he is preceded in death by his grandparents, Odis and Sarah Greene and Doc and Rosa Lee Watson, and a brother-in-law, Michael Norris.

Funeral services for Richard Eddy Watson will be conducted Thursday afternoon, June 4, 2015 at 2:00 o’clock at Laurel Springs Baptist Church. The body will lie in state, at the church, from 12:00 until 2:00 p.m.. Officiating will be Reverend Rick Cornejo and Pastor Tim Lynch. Burial will follow in the Doc and Merle Watson Family Cemetery.

The family will receive friends Thursday afternoon, from 12:00 until 1:30, at the church, prior to the service.

In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to the Tantem Merle Webb Trust, in care of Bank of America, 1800 Blowing Rock Road, Boone, North Carolina 28607. Hampton Funeral and Cremation Service is in charge of the arrangements.

Richard Watson on the Cabin Stage at MerleFest in 2008. Photo by Lonnie Webster

Richard Watson on the Cabin Stage at MerleFest in 2008. Photo by Lonnie Webster

Richard Watson plays the blues with Doc, Bob Hill, Mitch Greenhill, T Michael Coleman, Charles Welch and  Buddy Green at a previous MerleFest. Photo by Lonnie Webster

Richard Watson plays the blues with Doc, Bob Hill, Mitch Greenhill, T Michael Coleman, Charles Welch and Buddy Green at a previous MerleFest. Photo by Lonnie Webster

Comments

comments

Privacy Policy | Rights & Permissions | Discussion Guidelines

Website Management by Outer Banks Media