Former Allegany County Legislative Chair, Leonard Watson, dies at age 84

Leonard M. Watson

Belmont - Leonard Morris Watson, 84, a former resident of Belmont died on Saturday, January 9, 2021 in Guthrie Hospital, Sayre, PA. He was born on September 11, 1936 in Wellsville, a son of the late Lynn and Dorothy Baker Watson. On June 9, 1962 in Quakertown, PA he married Margaret Jenkins who survives.

Leonard attended school in a one room schoolhouse with four children, and when he was in second grade, the children were bussed to the old Belmont Central School. After graduation he attended Alfred State College for Agriculture.

Leonard and Margaret eventually purchased the 640-acre farm and the house from his parents where they raised their three children, Sharon, Brian, and Karen. Life revolved around the farm, church and family.

He served as the West Almond Town clerk for two years from 1965 to 1967. Encouraged by a friend, he ran for county office and eventually represented District 5 on the Board of Legislators where he served for 26 years, with two years as Chairman of the board. In 1976, he served on the building committee overseeing the new addition to the courthouse.

Leonard was the happiest and most comfortable in his shop at the house with his many woodworking projects which included building six grandfather clocks.

He was involved in many community projects including the renovation of the West Almond Community Building and was chairman of the committee to raise money for the street clock that stands in Angelica today. Leonard served on the Cuba Hospital Board as well as the Allegany County Republican Executive Committee.

Surviving in addition to his wife is a daughter, Sharon (Richard) Kiefner and their children Adam and Hope; a son Brian (Elena) Watson and their daughter Alyona; a daughter Karen Marquis and her children Ryder, Logan and Josephine; a brother, Lewis (Toni) Watson and several nieces and nephews.

A private gathering and funeral service will be held at the Kopler-Williams Funeral Home, 21 N. Genesee Street, Fillmore. Rev. Dr. Wesley Oden, pastor of the Houghton Wesleyan Church, will officiate. Burial will be in Forrest Hills Cemetery, Belmont. A public celebration of life will be held later during summer 2021. Memorials if desired to: Angelica Rescue Squad, 85 W Main Street, Angelica, NY 14709.

( )