Benjamin Cortez Watkins, Jr., 83, of Leonhardt Rd., Morganton, NC, went home to be with the Lord on Wednesday, November 14, 2007 at his home. Born on January 4, 1924, he was the son of the late Benjamin Cortez Watkins, Sr. and Beatrice Cordia Walker Watkins. In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by a son, Benjamin Keith Watkins. Ben was an active member of Oak Hill United Methodist Church. He was a WWII veteran during which he served in the European theater and received five bronze stars. Ben was a life-long dairy farmer, having served on the board of Dairymen, Inc. He was a devoted family man and friend to all. His family and friends will miss his wonderful sense of humor, love of life, and his sharing of wonderful stories.Left to cherish his memory are his wife, Betty Crawley Watkins of the home; a daughter, Denise Watkins Harris and husband, Danny; a grandson, Izaak B. Watkins; a granddaughter, Cody M. Watkins; two great-grandsons, Noah and Josiah Watkins; a brother, Eugene Watkins and wife, Geraldine, of CA; two sisters, Louise Kidd of Lexington, KY and Sarah Alice Huffman of Hickory, NC; and a number of nieces and nephews.The funeral will be held at 2:00 p.m., Sunday, November 18, 2007 at Oak Hill United Methodist Church with the Reverends Mark Denton, Ron Cooper, and Ronnie LaFevers officiating. Burial will follow in the church cemetery with military graveside rites to be performed by Valdese American Legion Post #234. The family will receive friends at Sossoman Funeral Home on Saturday evening from 5:30 until 7:30 p.m. At other times the family will be at the residence. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to the Oak Hill United Methodist Church Driveway Fund, 2239 NC Hwy 181, Morganton, NC 28655.

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