Robert L. Watson 

July 1, 1925 – January 22, 2024

Robert L. Watson was born in Lynn, MA. At 18 years old and with the onset of WW2, he enlisted in the Navy and was assigned to the 6th Beach Battalion. His battalion orders were to invade the shores of France on D-Day, June 6, 1944. Assigned with the Beach Masters, his Unit was the first to land on Normandy, Omaha Beach. His landing craft, while approaching the beach, hit a mine, and exploded. He sustained wounds that earned him a Purple Heart. His unit experienced heavy losses and spent 28 days securing the French Coast. As a result of Robert’s efforts, he was promoted three times during the campaign and was decorated with numerous service medals, including the “Croix de Guerre with Palm Leaf” from France. Near the end of WW2, he was reassigned to Camp Pendleton, CA, to serve out the rest of his duties in the Navy. It was at that time, at the USO in downtown Oceanside, that he met the love of his life, Marjorie. Robert, along with his new wife, settled in Carlsbad, CA, where he started his new business, RLW Construction, responsible for building hundreds of homes in North County from the 1950s to the 1970s. He is also remembered for building and opening the Wayside Inn Restaurant in Carlsbad. As a civic leader throughout his life, he served as President of the Carlsbad Community Chest, the Carlsbad Boys Club, and the Lions Club. He was also a member of the Carlsbad School Board and was named Carlsbad Chamber of Commerce “Man of the Year” in 1960.

He lived his adult life with his wife of 78 years, Marjorie Watson, and raised three boys, Robert Watson Jr, Mike Watson, and Mark Watson. He is survived by Marjorie, all three boys, their spouses, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren. In his retirement, he dedicated his life to educating civic groups and schools about the reality of war and the importance of remembering the men and women who gave their lives for our county. Robert also volunteered on the Midway Aircraft Carrier in San Diego, sharing his experiences during WW2 with the public. He enjoyed playing golf with his buddies and motor-homing with his wife and friends around the world. He lived a long and wonderful life, and we will miss him dearly.