C. Thomas Watson, of Bainbridge Island, WA died on November 20, 2019 in Seattle, WA at the age of 73. Tom and his wife of 48 years, Kristy, have one child and two grandchildren: Gretchen Lee, of Seattle is married to Benjamin Heavner and mother of Elias and Marlowe of Seattle. Tom is survived by his siblings Marianne Milkowski, Judy Watson-Olson, Jan Watson, Roberta Johnson of Michigan, and John Watson of Florida. He was preceded in death by his parents Rolland “Ron” Watson and Eunice Meach Watson of Gladstone, MI.
Tom was born on December 22, 1945 in Detroit, MI. He graduated from Gladstone Area High School in 1964, where he lettered in basketball, football, and track. He earned a bachelor’s degree in Electrical Engineering from the University of Michigan in 1968, a master’s in computer science from Washington State University in 1975, and an executive MBA from the University of Washington in 1985. Tom’s career in the technology sector included work at IBM in Rochester, MN, Seattle, WA, and San Francisco, CA; Physio Control; Eli Lilly; and Connext; along with his consulting work.
Tom was a great family man and a loving father. He married Kristy Beth Anderson, daughter of Albert “Chuck” and Marion Tweeten Anderson of Spring Grove, MN and La Crosse, WI on July 3, 1971. The couple’s daughter, Gretchen Lee Watson Heavner, was born in 1977. Tom’s grandchildren were a source of great joy and pride, whether he was spending time with them or telling stories about them to his friends on Bainbridge Island. Tom loved reunions with childhood friends and reconnecting with his roots when he travelled back to Gladstone, MI and La Crosse, WI.
Tom was a social, active man who was deeply involved in Kiwanis Bainbridge. He enjoyed sailing, golf, and bridge. The family invites those who knew Tom to join us celebrating his life on January 25 at 2:00 P.M. at the Boys and Girls Club of Bainbridge Island, 9453 Coppertop Loop NE. The family is also planning a memorial gathering at Tom’s home town of Gladstone, MI this summer. In lieu of flowers, the family suggests memorial gifts in Tom’s name to Kiwanis Bainbridge, or to your local Kiwanis club.