October 2, 1925 - March 26, 2018
VIRGILINA, VA Rufus Owen Watts Jr., husband of the late Wilma Ford Watts, passed away on March 26, 2018 at Duke Hospice in Durham, NC. Rufus, 92, was born near Christie, VA on October 2, 1925, the son of the late Rufus O. Watts Sr. and the late Martha Averett Watts. Rufus graduated from Cluster Springs High School in 1941. During World War II, he served in the US Navy as a radioman aboard the USS Baltimore in the Pacific. After discharge Rufus and Wilma were married 1946. Around 1950, Rufus joined what is now the Federal Aeronautics Administration for what became a more than 30 year career as an air traffic controller. He rose to become Assistant Chief at the regional center in Leesburg, VA. In 1953, Rufus and Wilma settled in Northern Virginia where they raised three children, sons Carroll Watts of Raleigh and Raymond Watts of Mt. Airy, MD., and a daughter, Sandra Vanderbeek of Raleigh. In 1983, after Rufus retired from the FAA, they relocated to a farm on Virgilina Road near Christie. Rufus enjoyed spending time with family, traveling and working around the farm. He was a member of Shady Grove United Methodist Church. Survivors include their children and Raymond’s wife, Lynn and Sandra’s husband Peter; grandchildren, Andrew Watts, Justin and Elizabeth Vanderbeek, Thomas Vanderbeek, Steven Taylor-Watts and wife Laura Michaels, Jamie Caroline Watts and Rachel James; great-grandchildren, Camden Watts, Liam Gauvin, Emilia Watts, Eloise Vanderbeek and Coen Vanderbeek. Rufus had one surviving sister, Janie Matthews of Los Angeles, CA. He was predeceased by sisters Doris Talley, Maxine Lowery and Jean Davidson and a brother, John Henry ‘Buck’ Watts. Funeral services for Mr. Watts will be held on Friday, March 30, 2018 at 2:00 PM at Shady Grove United Methodist Church with Reverend Shayne Estes officiating. Burial will follow in the church cemetery. The family will receive friends on Friday, March 30, 2018 from 1:00-2:00 PM prior to the service. Those wishing to give memorials please consider Shady Grove United Methodist Church, 4129 E. Hyco Road, Virgilina, VA 24592 or the American Legion, Department of Virginia, PO Box 361656, Indianapolis IN 46236-1656.
VIRGILINA, VA Rufus Owen Watts Jr., husband of the late Wilma Ford Watts, passed away on March 26, 2018 at Duke Hospice in Durham, NC. Rufus, 92, was born near Christie, VA on October 2, 1925, the son of the late Rufus O. Watts Sr. and the... View Obituary & Service Information
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