Dr. John D. Watson, Jr.Columbus, GA, 1929 - 2018 0comment
Dr. John D. Watson, Jr., 88, of Columbus, Georgia, went home to be with the Lord on May 4, 2018. His family would like to invited friends and loved ones to join in a visitation on Monday, May 7, 2018, at Striffler-Hamby Mortuary from 5-7 p.m. In his honor, there will be a funeral service held Tuesday, May 8, 2018, at St. Paul United Methodist Church of Columbus at 11 a.m., with Rev. Dr. Buddy Cooper and Rev. Dr. John Fugh officiating.
Dr. John D. Watson, Jr., was born May 9, 1929, in Prescott, Ark., the third child to the late Mertice Adele Webb and John Denton Watson. After moving with his family at the age of five to Malvern, Ark., John would enter grade school and find his first love—music. He would begin lessons in piano, but because of his vast intellect and eagerness to learn, even at such a young age, he would eventually quit going to lessons and teach himself. In his adolescence, John would join the Boy Scouts and rise to the level of life. As the lovable and personable individual he was, John would be elected cheerleader and class president of his graduating class; he was also a member of the Delta Sigma fraternity, glee club, Thespian's club, and national honor society. Since the age of 10, John knew he wanted to be a physician in his adult life, so, upon graduation, he would apply to the University of Arkansas where he would: join the brothers of Kappa Sigma, become president of his fraternity; sang in the university opera for the Marriage of Figaro; join the University band, become president and later join the music major fraternity, Phi Mu Alpha Sinfonia. Once in medical school, he became the class representative, student body president, and assistant of public relations for the University of Arkansas.
Between receiving his medical degree and applying for his residency at Hunter Air Force Base in Savannah, Ga., John would marry his best friend and love of his life, Margaret Gist, on Aug. 15, 1953. The two would later adopt two children, Blair and Melissa, who would become the delight of the young couple's life. Then, after 8 years in Kingsville, Texas, the now Dr. Watson decided to specialize in radiology and would complete his residency in New Orleans, La. He was soon offered a position as clinical assistant professor for Tulane University medical school before completing his certifications in diagnostic radiology, therapeutic radiology, and nuclear medicine. In 1967, Dr. Watson and his family would move to Columbus, Ga., where he and his team would introduce chemotherapy, especially for breast cancer, to the Columbus area.
Dr. Watson was a devoted member to his community and peers. He would become an avid member of: Muscogee County Medical Society; Georgia Society of Nuclear Medicine of which he founded and resided as president; Medical Association of Georgia of which he became president; the board of chancellors of the American College of Radiology; American College of Nuclear Medicine which he was awarded a fellowship, became president for several years, and would be awarded the gold medal for outstanding service; the Candun Club of which he was a longtime member and eventual president; Department of Human Resources of the state of Georgia appointed by Governor Zell Miller; and became president of the Medical Association of Georgia foundation for almost 20 years. Dr. John Watson was a loving husband, amazing father, proud member of the medical field, and truly an inspiration to all who were lucky to meet him. He will be missed dearly.
Along with his parents, Dr. Watson is preceded in death by his sisters, Mary Schultz and Leah Murray.
He is survived by his: loving wife, Margaret; children, John Blair (Beth) Watson of Smyrna, Georgia and Melissa Ann (Lt. Col. Joseph) Coale; and grandchildren, John Blair Watson, Jr., Michael Strickland Coale, and David Starr Coale. Dr. Watson also leaves behind many, many friends, patients, colleagues, and loved ones who will forever honor his memory.
In lieu of flowers, Dr. Watson's family asks that anyone wishing to make a contribution in John's honor to do so to either St. Paul United Methodist Church or to the Boy Scouts of America.
Offers of condolences for the Watson family and fond memories may be made at www.shcolumbus.com.
Published May 6, 2018