Bobbie Joyce Watkins was born to Benjamin Roy Beckham and Lottie Beckham on December 9, 1936, in Tupelo, Miss. She was the youngest of three children. In 1951 she married Lee Stewart Watkins and in 1952 gave birth to their first child, Gayle Lee. By the time she was 22 four more children had followed - Charles Eugene "Chuck," Richard Stewart "Rick," James Earl, and Benjamin Clarence "Benji." As she raised her children, she and Lee co-owned Duke Tire Co. in Forest Park. The business is still in operation today. In 1977, her first granddaughter, Shanna Johnson, arrived. In 1980, her second, Jennifer Johnson, and in 1983, her only grandson, Bryan Johnson.
"Mom," as everyone came to know her, had a huge heart. She always had a smile on her face, a positive attitude, and a warm hug to give. Mom loved mocha frappuccinos, the Atlanta Braves, Mississippi, gambling all night, on-line video poker, egg sandwiches, staying up late and sleeping in. Spending time with her children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren was what put the biggest smile on her face in the last years of her life.
Mom took her last breath on Tuesday, April 3, 2012.
She is survived by her daughter, Gayle Johnson (Jeff); sons, Ricky and James; grandchildren, Shanna Schroeder (Jeff ), Jennifer Tingle (Neil), and Bryan Johnson; great grandchildren, Wesley, Lucas, Tyrus, Mary and Ellen. She is preceded in death by her parents, spouse, brother and sister, and sons, Chuck and Benji, daughter in-law, Gayle Watkins, and her beloved dog, Mike.
A service will be held in the chapel at Thomas L. Scroggs Funeral Directors, Thursday, April 5, 2012 at 11 a.m. Interment to follow at Fairview Memorial Gardens in Ellenwood. Visitation will be held on Wednesday evening from 5-8 p.m. Thomas L. Scroggs Funeral Directors, Morrow, Ga., 770-961-2828 in charge of arrangements. www.thomasscroggsfuneraldirectors.com.