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Obituaries & Guest Book

Mary Frances Watson

Thursday, January 14, 2020 from 10:00 am to 3:00 pm

Douglas A. Fiery Funeral Home

Friday, January 15, 2021 at 1:00 pm

Rose Hill Cemetery


Dr. Mary Frances Claybon Watson passed away Tuesday, January 5, 2021 at Meritus Medical Center, Hagerstown, MD.

Mary Frances was the 4th of 6 children born to the late Rev. William Claybon and the late Mary Bell Claybon.

  1. Frances attended South Hagerstown High School and graduated at the top of her class. Shortly after high school, she met Lewis Watson, Sr. – the man she would later marry.

Mary Frances attended Howard University in Washington, DC where she studied nursing for a year. She transferred to Molloy College in Long Island, New York, and obtained a Bachelor of Science in Nursing. Mary Frances also earned a Master of Arts and a Master of Education from Teachers College, Columbia University. She obtained a Mortuary License from Farmingdale University. In 2004, she earned her Doctoral Degree in Education from Teachers College.

Mary Frances was a preacher’s kid. As such, she learned about God’s eternal love early in life and was baptized at a young age. She was a member of Beulah Missionary Baptist Church in Decatur, GA where served on the Health Committee. Mary Frances was a member of many organizations including Chi Eta Phi Nursing Sorority - Kappa Eta Chapter, the NAACP and Order of the Eastern Star.

Mary Frances and Lewis assumed the role of morticians and ran the family business – Watson’s Funeral Home in Hagerstown. Watson’s was the only black funeral home in the city at the time. They provided professional and compassionate service to countless families in Hagerstown’s historic Jonathan Street community and the surrounding area for over 35 years.

Mary Frances leaves behind to cherish her wonderful memory a loving and devoted son – Lewis Watson, Jr. of Hagerstown.; two stepsons Tommy Watts (Michelle) of Hagerstown and Chris Russ; four sisters Barbara A. Latney of Randallstown, MD, Betty J. Lee of Sykesville, MD, Senator Joanne C. Benson of Landover, MD and Agnes Claybon of Baltimore, MD; one brother, John E. Claybon Sr. of Ranson, WV, and a loving sister-in-law, JoAnn Claybon; ten grandchildren – Corin Anderson (Justin), Lewis Watson III, Ashlei Watson, Kennedy Fleming, Jordan Taylor, Brian Kaufman, Brian Brown, Tommy Watts II, Trevor Watts and Makayla Watts; one great grandchild – Winston Anderson; and a host of nieces, nephews, great-nieces and nephews and wonderful friends.

Mary Frances was preceded in death by her parents, The Rev. William Claybon and Mary Bell Claybon, and her husband of 41 years Lewis R. Watson, Sr.

The family will receive friends at the Douglas A. Fiery Funeral Home, 1331 Eastern Boulevard Hagerstown, MD 21742 on Thursday, January 14, 2021 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. COVID-19 social distancing and mask guidelines will be followed. Interment will be in the Rose Hill Cemetery Hagerstown, MD on Friday, January 15, 2021 at 1 p.m.

In lieu of flowers, the family asks that donations be withheld for the Dr. Mary F. Watson Memorial Scholarship – details are forthcoming.



Guest Book

Much can be said about this loving, amazing and powerful woman. Mary you will be missed by the family and friends that you loved and admired. Rest In Power Mary

Steven I Watson
Baltimore, MD

Much can be said about this loving amazing and powerful woman. Mary you will be missed by the family that you loved and admired. Rest In Power

Steven Watson
Baltimore , Maryland

Our condolences to the family during this difficult time.

The Lewis Family
Baltimore, MD

Weep not; My aunt Mary Francis Watson has been released from the bondage of the flesh and is now resting in the bosom of Jesus. Stay well family.

Martin & Vanessa Lee
Upper Marlboro, Maryland

We wish the family peace comfort and hope in the mist of your sorrow. With Sympathy

Eddie Jones
Upper Marlboro, Maryland

Although this beautiful rose has withered, its roots are very strong - still. As you mourn and suffer this loss, please know you are in my thoughts prayers. May God continue to bless and comfort the precious family and friends of Dr. Mary Frances Claybon Watson.

Doris Rudd Witcher
Clinton, Maryland

Mrs. Watson was like a mom to me. I lived around the corner from them. But I was always welcome. Even when Lou or Tom was not home. Mom blessed so many people in your life time. To My Brothers Philippians 4:7 And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.

Michael Anderson
Rosevelt, New York

Hey Lou.... Tom, You have our sincere condolences on the loss of your dear mom, Mary. For years, we could remember The Watson's at 96! It was always a good time as our two families grew together as great neighbors and friends. It is our prayer, as you go through this moment in time that you will cherish the memories of Mary, and find solace in knowing that she is at rest and with your dad, Big Lou. We love you guys, The Ladsons

LeRoy, HeyCassandra & Yvonne Ladson
Atlanta, GA

With deepest sympathy and heartfelt condolences to the family of a strong educated black woman may she rest in paradise.

Saundra Clark, Jones,Carter
Washington , Dcw

Dr. Watson was a great lady from a great family. Her accomplishments, as well as some of the other members of her family, are very impressive. They are particularly remarkable considering the time in our country when she grew up. May God bless her and her family. Bruce Poole

Bruce Poole
Hagerstown, MD

Our prayers and love is with you during the loss of your beloved sister Mary. Love,Celeste & Leroy Williams

Celeste A Williams
Fort Washington , Maryland

Family, you know she is with the Father and her mother and father My condolences to you all. Kootchie and Chuck and Chip

Elaine Williford
Phila, Pa 19150

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