A celebration of life with his family will be held at a later date. Arrangements are under the care of Holden Cremation and Funeral Service in Sparta.
Ronald Dean Watts passed from this life on Tuesday afternoon, July 27, 2021, at his home in Republic. Ron was born on Aug. 7, 1945, in Hotel St. Dieu, New Orleans, Louisiana.
He married Deborah Casey (Workman) Watts on June 2, 1978. They were blessed with more than 43 wonderful years together.
He was preceded in death by his father, Charles Howard Watts, and his older sister, Carolyn Ann (Watts) Richardson, who Ron referred to as “Sugie.” Ron is survived by his loving wife, Deborah; his children, Dena Marques (Alex), Jeffrey Watts, Lori Estes (Davey), Angela Ford (Gregg) and Michael Watts (Teri); mother, Dorothy Mae (Smith) Watts; his brothers William Watts (Janice) and Kenneth Watts; his aunt, Flo Lopeman; and many grandchildren, great-grandchildren, cousins, nieces and nephews.
Ron was a 1963 graduate of Springfield High School in Springfield, Illinois. After graduation, he entered the United States Navy and served as a fireman in the boiler room of the USS Theodore E. Chandler (DD-717) during the Vietnam War.
After his military service, Ron returned to Illinois to begin his career in the automotive service industry, working at Ford, American Motors and Chrysler dealerships. Later, he was the service manager at Countywide AMC in Garden Grove, California. He retired in Missouri after many years as the service manager at Ozark Chrysler Dodge, where he made many lifelong friends.
Ron was full of energy and enjoyed telling jokes, golfing, playing cards, watching St. Louis Cardinals games and his favorite westerns, going on drives in the country with Debbie, and spending time with his family.