EMMETSBURG - Funeral services for Vernon "Shorty" Watkins, 77, of Emmetsburg were 10:30 a.m. Monday, Jan. 21, 2013, at Joyce-Alesch Funeral Home in Graettinger. Interment was in Valley Vue Cemetery with military rites by the Nelson-Christensen American Legion Post No. 164.
He died Wednesday, Jan. 16, 2013, at Lakeside Lutheran Home in Emmetsburg.
Vernon "Shorty" Watkins was born Feb. 3, 1935, in Royal, the son of Gayle and Leora (Monk) Watkins. He went to school in Ruthven and was a graduate of Ruthven High School. Following his education, he joined the United States Army.
On Aug. 26, 1978, Shorty was united in marriage to Eva Nissen in Graettinger where the couple lived and raised their eight children.
Shorty was a very humble and simple man. He enjoyed going to see friends for coffee with Eva, and frequenting garage sales and auctions. He had a true love of horses and owned many throughout his life. He was a very generous man who would help anyone in need. Shorty had a heart of gold; he dearly loved his "turtledove", Eva, and he treasured every moment he spent with his family.
Left to cherish his memory is his wife, Eva, of Emmetsburg; children: Merlin Nissen of Emmetsburg, Marlene Kitto of Manitou Springs, Colo., Mavis Nissen of Ruthven, Teresa Petersen of Red Oak, Steve Watkins (Sheryl) of Estherville, Cheri Mahan of Council Bluffs, Jackie Riepma (Ron) of Boyden and Shawna Gerdeman (Dean) of Dickens; a sister, Rita Cook, of Dunnellon, Fla.; 15 grandchildren and six great-grandchildren.
Shorty was preceded in death by his brother, Martin Watkins; granddaughter, Shantal Clayton; brother-in-law, Ed Cook, and sister-in-law, Polly Watkins.
Online condolences may be sent to: www.joycefuneralhomes.com.