Dennis Glenn Watson, 90, of Bloomington, passed away peacefully Wednesday (April 18, 2018) at Advocate BroMenn Medical Center, Normal.
We will celebrate Dennis’ life at 11 a.m. Monday at Second Presbyterian Church, Bloomington. The Rev. Dr. Kathy Stoner-Lasala will officiate. Visitation with the family will precede the service from 9 to 10:45 a.m. and will continue with a luncheon immediately after the service. Private interment will be at Funk’s Grove Cemetery, McLean. Calvert & Metzler Memorial Home, Bloomington, is handling arrangements.
Dennis loved his family, his friends, and those from the organizations to which he was so devoted. He never missed an opportunity to create an event to convene the family — even if it happened to be hundreds of miles away in Florida. His grandchildren have wonderful memories of the Watson enclave that he created there each spring. The fact that the Ringling Circus Winter Quarters were nearby in Venice may have only been a coincidence, but some of us think that his love for the circus community had a hand in the decision for the get-together’s location in Sarasota.
Dennis was born March 30, 1928, in Bloomington, to Thomas "Vin" and Vivian "Viv" Watson. Raised and educated in Bloomington, he attended Bloomington public schools and graduated from Illinois Wesleyan University. At IWU, he met Margaret Davidson and later on June 27, 1951, they married in Bloomington. Their 63-year marriage is a testimony to the vow they took to love each other in sickness and in health until parted in death — with Margaret’s passing in 2015.
During his time at Bloomington High School and Illinois Wesleyan, Dennis made lifelong friends with classmates and with his brothers at the Phi Gamma Delta fraternity. He graduated from IWU and after three years in the Air Force, Dennis began a 37-year career with State Farm Insurance in 1953. Dennis held early positions in Birmingham, Ala., and Newark, Ohio; and in 1970, he returned to Bloomington, where he remained until his retirement in 1990.
Throughout his career, Dennis and Margaret made many friends along the way. Along with many of them that were also pursuing careers with State Farm, Dennis and Margaret retired in the Bloomington-Normal area. These friendships continued locally through involvement with the Longfellow Club, IWU alumni, Second Presbyterian Church and Westminster Village.
There are a number of organizations where Dennis offered his support and leadership. He was an elder of the Second Presbyterian Church, and past president of a number of organizations: Bloomington High School Booster Club, Industrial Management Club, McLean County Multiple Sclerosis Society, IWU Chapter Phi Gamma Delta Alumni, Friends of ISU Milner Library, Corn Belt Philatelic Society and Longfellow Club. He always supported Illinois Wesleyan University, and with his wife, Margaret, he was awarded the 2003 Illinois Wesleyan Loyalty Award.
Dennis is loved and will be deeply missed by his children, Mark (Kathy) Watson, Elmhurst, and Meg (Ted) Boehne, Edina, Minn.; seven grandchildren, David, Christopher, Virginia, Phill (Naomi), Anne (Graham), Scott and Danielle; four great-grandchildren, VerenaRae and Dustin, Vashti, and Sophie; sister, Suzanne Watson Babb; brother, Tee Watson; sisters-in-law, Ellen Marie Read, Hazel Zimner, Marilyn (Dick) Leckrone, Ethel Mae Leggett; and many nieces and nephews.
He was preceded in death by his parents, Thomas "Vin" and Vivian "Viv" Watson, and his wife, Margaret.
Memorials may be made to Second Presbyterian Church, Illinois Wesleyan University, ISU Milner Library Special Collections Fund or Westminster Village.
Please view the obituary and share your condolences and memories at www.calvertmemorial.com.