Al Watson


Al Watson has begun his “next great adventure” after passing peacefully from pancreatic cancer.  He passed at home with his life partner, Claudia, beside him.  True to his word, he left this world just after his buddy Magee, who passed away two days before.   

Al was the son of Richard and Helen, and brother to Jim and Bill.  He grew up in Mt. Morris, where he found his passion for music.  For the majority of his career, Al worked at Knight Mfg (Kuhn) where he ganged up with his best pals Ernst Saunders and Doug Williams.   He finished up his career with Atlas IED, retiring in January 2020.

Al most enjoyed playing bass with great friends, many of which are considered his music family.  He also loved providing sound for many music festivals where he will be greatly missed by many.

Special to him was Willow Folk Festival, which he was a part of for over 40 years and where he and Claudia were married in 1988.  He will be remembered as a big guy in a Hawaiian shirt with a crazy sense of humor.  He loved his dogs, his family, and his friends very much.

Predeceased by his dog, Magee by two days, parents, brother Bill, brother-in-law, Claude Yoakum.

Survived by his wife, Claudia, children Angela Watson and Cristi (Erik) Gretebeck, Grandchildren Sydney, Ethan, Grant, Kiersten, Skylar, Macy and Chance, and his sisters in law, Pat Watson and Cindy Yoakum

A Celebration of Life will be planned for the future. In lieu of flowers, feel free to make a donation to the UW Carbone Pancreatic Cancer Center in his name. U.W. Foundation (