With sadness we announce that our mother, grandmother and great-grandmother, Lucy Watkins,
passed away on February 23, 2019. She was born on April 18, 1923, in Kansas City, Missouri, to
Jay E. Yarnell and Emily A. Zdychmec. Her mother died when Lucy was just 13 years old. An
only child, she was smart, strong, feisty and fussy.
Motivated to get out on her own, she was able to graduate from Central High School in Kansas
City at age 16. She went to business college and worked in New York until WWII. She enlisted
in the U.S Navy WAVES and was trained as an Aviation Machinist’s Mate (Instruments) at Camp
Elliott, San Diego, California. She served three years there on Coronado Island. After her
discharge from the Navy, Lucy received an acknowledgement of honorable service signed by
James Forrestal, Secretary of the Navy.
While in the Navy she met a handsome sailor sitting next to her—and married Howard Watkins
on January 21, 1945 in Los Angeles, California. They spent nearly 60 years together.
Lucy and Howard were wonderful loving parents to daughters Christine and Janice—supportive,
involved in their activities, providing years of fun at their beach houses in Southern California.
Very athletic, Lucy, as a young girl, asked her father to sign for her to join the Roller Derby. He
told her an emphatic NO! She played ladies competitive softball in her 20’s and was an
accomplished water skier and loved bowling. In her 90’s, she rarely missed Wii Bowling and was
the competitor that everyone came to watch.
Professionally, Lucy was the office manager for a law firm in Los Angeles for many years as
well as a successful real estate agent.
She and Howard were very involved with the Loyal Order of Moose lodge. She worked her way
up to the highest level of Senior Regent of the Women’s Auxiliary.
Lucy first and foremost loved her family. She was devastated when Janice passed away at age 23. She is survived by daughter, Christine (Mike), granddaughter, Beth Ann (Jason), great-
grandsons, Ben and Sam, nephews Brad (Neva) and Bill (Carol).
She was preceded in death by her husband, daughter, parents, aunts, uncles and cousins. She
requested no services and will be buried at a later date next to Howard and Janice in Southern
We would like to offer our sincere appreciation to everyone at The Ridge Cottonwood and
Signature Hospice for their care, compassion and services.