La Grande, Oregon

Rex Jay Watson, 55, of La Grande died Dec. 13 at a local care center. Family and friends are invited to a gathering at 3 p.m. Saturday at the American Legion in La Grande. Daniels Chapel of the Valley is in charge of arrangements.

Mr. Watson was born Feb. 21, 1951, in Dayton, Ohio, to Finley James and Wilma (Edmiston) Watson. He attended schools in Dayton.

Later he enlisted in the U.S. Army where he was proud to serve his country in the 82nd Airborne Special Forces Ranger division during the Vietnam era. After his honorable discharge, he returned to Dayton for a time before moving to Laramie, Wyo., before finally settling in La Grande.

On Jan. 21, 1978, he married Sharon Ann Redden. Together the couple not only raised their own children but many other children over the years.

Rex received a bachelor’s degree of fine arts from Washington State University in 1992 and became an accomplished artist in oil painting and was known as an expert in the art of flint-knapping. He volunteered his gift of art to children every year at the Cove Cherry Festival and at Arts For All.

He also enjoyed fishing and had a great sense of humor, wisdom and creativity.

Survivors include his wife, Sharon, of La Grande; his mother, Wilma Ohler of Kettering, Ohio; children, Kiley Watson of Eugene, KB Watson, Ben Waln and Dan Waln, all of La Grande; brother, Kenneth Ullery; sisters, Iris Hicks and Joyce Barger, all of Ohio; and numerous nieces, nephews and other relatives. He was preceded in death by his father, Finley James Watson.

Memorials may be made to GRH Hospice in care of Daniels Chapel of the Valley, 1502 Seventh St., La Grande 97850.

The Observer – Obituaries for the week ending Dec. 16, 2006, Published: December 16, 2006