Alton Josey "Bo" Watts

alton watts

December 8, 1927 ~ August 1, 2021

Born in: Sumpter County, South Carolina
Resided in: Asheville, North Carolina

Asheville – Alton Josey “Bo” Watts was born December 8, 1927 in the Oswego community of Sumter County. He was the son of the late Vernie Parnell Watts and Ethel Mae Jones Watts. He attended public school at the Oswego Elementary School, the Mayesville Consolidated School and Edmunds High School, graduating in June 1944. He attended Clemson College before entering the US Navy in July 1945. He was stationed at NOB Argentia, NFL rose to the rank of GM3/c and discharged in July 1946. He returned to Clemson and earned a Degree in Mechanical Engineering in January 1950.

He was employed by Carolina Power & Light Co. In September 1950, he was recalled to active duty with the US Navy during the Korean War. He was released from active duty in January 1952 and returned to work with Carolina Power & Light Co., where he spent the next 38 years, retiring in 1990 as Manager, Fossil and Hydro Generation Western Area in Asheville, NC.

During his career, he was very active in the engineering profession. He was a registered professional engineer in NC and a member of the North Carolina Engineers Society and on the board of directors for several years. In 1964, he organized the Sanford, NC Engineers Society, which was part of the North Carolina Engineers Society. He was a long-time member and past president of The Engineers Society of Western North Carolina. Also, in 1964, he was elected Honorary Member of the NC State University Chapter of Pi Tau Sigma, the school’s Mechanical Engineering Honors Society. He was a 50-year life member of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers.

He was a lifelong member of the United Methodist Church and held many offices in the church. He was a certified lay speaker and Sunday School teacher at Skyland United Methodist Church. He organized Troop 72 of the Boy Scouts of America at Skyland United Methodist Church. He was a member of The Order Of The Arrow and served as Scoutmaster for 10 years. He was a 50-year member of the Lions Club and was past president of the Valley Springs Club. He served on the Board of Directors of the Skyland Fire Department for six years. He worked with the United Way of Buncombe County, serving on the budget committees of several organizations in Buncombe County.

After his retirement, he became involved with genealogy and did extensive research on his family. He developed a website that assisted many of his family members all over the US to find lost members. He also composed several documents on his family which were donated to the Genealogy Library in his hometown of Sumter, SC. He was also involved with Ballroom Dance and had many wonderful friends in the dance community. He was a member of “Four Seasons and Memories” Dance Clubs in Hendersonville, NC. He was an avid skeet, trap and sporting clays shooter and was a member of several gun clubs in North and South Carolina. In later years, he learned to bowl and was a member of Haywood Knolls Bowling League in Hendersonville, where he had so many close friends.

He was preceded in death by his wife of 43 years, Stenza Lee Pait Watts of Bladenboro, NC. He is survived by a son, Jeff Watts (Sherry) of Candler, and a daughter, Pegge Watts McCormick (James) of Surfside Beach, SC; a grandson, Justin Watts McCormick (Dana) ; two granddaughters: Kelly Alford (Adam) and Lara McCormick (Bill), all of Surfside Beach; four great-grandchildren: Wyatt, Reed, Griffin, and Caroline; two step-grandchildren: Eddie Morse (Tiffany) and Lee Morse (Barbara); and two step-great-grandchildren: Parker and Avery.

Alton was also preceded in death by his sister, Colzie Britt, and his beloved companions Lorna Mims and Binney Miller.

A memorial service will be held at 11 AM Friday, August 6, 2021 at Groce Funeral Home at Lake Julian. Friends will be received following the service. Inurnment will be private.

In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to Valley Springs Lions Club, PO Box 371, Skyland NC 28776.

Groce Funeral Home at Lake Julian is assisting the family.


Memorial Service: August 6, 2021 11:00 am - June 12, 2024 12:00 pm

Room: Chapel

Groce Funeral Home at Lake Julian
72 Long Shoals Road
Arden, NC 28704


For those who wish to pay their respects: August 6, 2021 12:00 pm

Room: Chapel

Groce Funeral Home at Lake Julian
72 Long Shoals Road
Arden, NC 28704


Navy Veteran

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Memories Timeline


  1. Prayers for the family. I just recently met Mr. Watts, his daughter in law calls him PawPaw. Very outgoing for his age. Lots of knowledge. He was very nice. We got together at Jeff and Sherry’s home for the July 4th celebration and he joined a few of us. So glad I was able to meet him.

  2. Jeff &family,Sorry to read about Bo,he sure was one of a kind.We will be praying for you and your family.

  3. To: Peggy and Jeff, we always knew him as Uncle Bo, he will be so missed! We have so many childhood memories.

  4. We extend good wishes to the family! He will certainly be missed — by you all! But, also by us, his neighbors at Givens. We loved hearing his never-ending stories, and shared his love of dancing and music. He left several great cd’s with us, bursting with music he loved!
    Bo was definitely “one of a kind”, and one of whom we treasure many happy memories.

  5. Our heartfelt condolences for the loss of Mr.Bo….We will be thinking of you in the upcoming days.
    Rick and Jan Elingburg

  6. Jeff and Family, Mr. Watts will be missed. My father Wilbur Teague from Waterville Dam thought highly of him as a supervisor and a friend. We had a lot of good times hunting, having bear stews. He was always interested in my music as a kid and attended many times where I was making music through the years. We stayed in touch and I called him on his birthday after dad passed away They would call each other on their birthdays. Mr Watts was two days older than dad’s.

  7. To pegge and all the family. U are in our prayers. So so sorry for your loss. U now have an angel looking over u

  8. Bo was a cornerstone among CP&L plant managers. A friend to all and highly respected. Saddened by this loss.

  9. My deepest sympathies to Jeff, Pegge, and the rest of the family. I am so sorry for your loss. Bo was a wonderful person who brought light to everyone he touched.

  10. Pegge, James, Justin, Kelley and Lara,
    Please accept my deepest symapthy in the loss of Alton. He was a good man, and I have such good memories of him. Sending prayers of peace and healing. I love you all.
    Perri Anne

  11. Dear Peggy and Jeff
    I considered your father a mentor and a friend. He did so much for me in early in my career and I will forever be grateful to have known him. After he retired he took on a new life pursuing his passions. I know you and your families were precious to him. Marion joins me in sending our sincere condolences. Godspeed Bo!

  12. To Jeff, Peggy, and their families: I was so sorry to hear of your loss. Bo made such a wonderful difference in my Mom’s life. Being around them was always a joyful experience. I will be eternally grateful for the tenderness and concern he showed her during her last illness. Bo will be missed.

  13. Bo has been a dear friend for many years. We first knew Bo and Stenza at S,y,and United Church. Wonderful memories inc,due many shared meals church events, ballroom dances and hunting. Bo was a real southern gentleman and so loved!
    Vic and Thelma McGraw

  14. There are people in our life that have the character, the stability, the influence; that make life rich. Bo Watts was one of those people. Bo Watts will be remembered for his involvement in other people’s lives. I cannot express completely how much he meant in my life and how he was one of the people that made growing up in Skyland in the 60’s and 70’s such a wonderful time and place. I especially want to thank Mr. Watts for the kindness he exhibited to my mom as she was suffering from vascular dementia. Thank you for being ” Bo Watts”

  15. Jeff,Peggy….. For almost 10 years I was privileged to be the ” closest door” neighbor to your dad. He frequently reminded me to respect his age ..( just a few months older) and to mind my manners as we traded witty barbs daily .. as well as deep conversations sitting on our shared deck .
    He was a friend for all time and I share your loss. We all were blessed through his life because of so many quality traits and his love of family and friends.

  16. Miss Pegge, Kelley, Lara and Justin,
    I’m so sorry for your loss. May your memories and love you shared bring you comfort. 💕💕

  17. As a teenage boy of the early 1960’s I remember Bo Watts coming to become the Superintendent of the new Carolina Power & Light Company plant at Lake Julian who was also a great man that I looked up to at Skyland United Methodist Church. He was such a role a terrific role model for me and I’ll always remember him. May God truly bless his family during this time.
    R. Curran Welch

  18. Bo Watts was a difference maker in a lot of lives. He was my scout master, church leader, mentor & my friend. Bo had lifelong positive impact on so many people. I thank him for his leadership & guidance. May God bless…

  19. I just realized Charlie has already submitted a note.

  20. Pegge there’s no way to express how sorry I am for your loss. A daddy and grandpa loved so much by so many. He is for sure a sweet angel. My thoughts and prayers are with you and your family.

  21. Our thoughts and prayers are with you all, so sorry to hear about Bo, remember him well with all the respect due to a wonderful man. love to all the family

  22. Alice and I have maintained a cherished friendship with Bo Watts for more than 50 years and admired him as a husband, father and engaged citizen who made many contributions for the betterment of our community. I especially remeber enjoyable Boy Scout outings with Bo and Alice and I always delighted in his outgoing personality and perpetual optimism. He was a special man and we are better for having had him as our friend.

  23. Valley Springs Lions Club sending Thoughts & Prayers to Bo,’ s Family and Friends. Bo will be missed by many. Thank You Bo for many years as a Dedicated Lion and Citizen for our community.

  24. Bo Watts’s legacy will live on in the lives of us all. Another wonderful Edmunds High Classmate with a life of service to many and a big smile for everyone. A Life Well Lived! RIP – Ralph (Ray) Ardis, Class 55

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