In Memory

Jill Watson (Gathright)

Jill Watson Gathright (June 30, 1941 - February 12, 2020)

Jill Watson athright, 78 of Mission Valley died peacefully at the home of her daughter, with family and faithful canine companion, Pretty Boy, at her side.  Jill is survived by her son Greg of Wimberley: daughter, Melissa Lyman and son-in-law, Dr. Robert Lyman of Victoria; sister, June Patty (Alan) of Austin; brother Wallace Watson (Nancy) of Marin  CA; grnddaughters, Kelsey ipitz (Bryce) and Sarah Lyman, both of Houston; nieces, Sarah and Iryna Patty, newphew, Joe Patty; and sister-in-law Margie Hurdle.  She was preceded in death by husband, Howard; parents, John and Dorothy Watson; and brother-in-law, Benjamin Hurdle (Margie).

Jill was born to the late John and Dorothy Watson in Kilgore, TX on Jun 30, 1941.  Jill and her mother lived in Dallas while John served during "The War" sharing a home with family and friends until her father returned home safely.  The family spent time in East Texas where her father was an investigator of illegal slant drilling - "whipstocking" as it was better known.  They settled in Victoria during 1955.  As members of Trinity Episcopal Church, John served as Senior Warden and Dorothy taught kindergarten in the school.  This is the church home that formed Jill's lifelong faith.  She was a founding member of St. Stephen's Episcopal Church in Wimberly and became a member of Zion Lutheran Church in Mission Valley in 1991.  She served contiunally with the Altar Guild, Prayer Cicrle, Sunday School and Vacation Bible School.

Jill met Howard Gathright at Victoria High School.  Nicknamed "Chickadee", they grew from high school sweethearts to a devoted couple, enjoying 60 years of marriage.  Son, Greg, and daughter Melissa, were both born in Victoria sharing the love of parents, grandparents, and relatives.  In 1968, the family moved to the hills of Wimberley for Jill to complete her education in LIbrary Science after commuting weekeds from several years from Victoria to Southwest Texas State University.  She was an elementary school librarian in Drippings Springs for many years. Jill and Howard moved to Burnet, TX in 1984, as there were "too many people" in Wimberly for Howard.  In 1991, the couple returned to Howard's family farm in Mission Valley as loving grandparents to Kelsy and Sarah.

Jill served as school librarian at Juan Linn and Nursery elementary schools, contnuring her passion of books, volunteering at the Victoria Public Library.  She retired in 1996.  Jill instilled the love of reading to children wherever she served.  To this day, Kelsey and Sarah are avid readers and recall helping their "Omi" at the library.  Her cherished days were spent with granddaughters and Opa playing board games, cards, taking care of animals and reading their favorite books.  Words will never describe that special smile, light, love and kindness an devotion to her faith that she share with so many.

The famiy is especially thankful for all those who shared their love, compassion, patiendce and care for Jill/Mom/Omi and her family, e specially Hospice of South Tecas staff, Nurse Liza, Dr. Whitehouse and Pastor Meyer of Zion Lutheran Church in Mission Valley.  We are forever grateful to Omi's angel, Ofelia Rosales, for her continuous compassionate care for the final three years of her illness.  Aunt Jan and B.I.Hurdle were always part of Howard and Jill's lies specing as many Sunday afternoons as possible together solving the problems of the world, sharing stories and a home made dessert by Aunt Jan.  Maye if we all returned to the "Old Days" our world would be a happier place.

Family and friends are invited for fellowship and celebration of Jill's life on

Sunday, February 23rd from 2-4 PM at 707 North Victoria Street in Victoria.

In liew of flowers, donations to Zion Lutheran Chuch, Hospice of South Exas or sharity of donor's choice.

Words of comfort and special memories may be shared at

Submitted by Joye Oliver Tripson, 02/14/20