Robert Watts

Robert Watts

CHAMPAIGN – Robert Allan Watts, 75, of Champaign passed away at 12:35 p.m. Monday (June 25, 2012) in Holland, Mich.

Mr. Watts was born in Adrian, Mich., on July 4, 1936, to Richard Prosser Watts and Florence Hooker Watts. After his mother died in 1942, he came to live with his aunt and uncle, Margaret and Anthony Janata of Urbana.

He married Emily Stipes on Aug. 31, 1958, in Champaign. She survives.

Also surviving are his three sons, Benjamin Hooker Watts (Judith Argentieri) of Champaign, Edward Stipes Watts (Stephanie Wengert Watts) of East Lansing, Mich., and Thomas Janata Watts of Saugatuck, Mich.

In addition, he leaves behind his four grandchildren, Anton and Alexander Watts of East Lansing, Mich., and Olivia and Samuel Watts of Champaign.

He is also survived by his sister, Sally Watts Dawson of Richmond, Va., and seven nieces and nephews.

He was preceded in death by his parents, the Janatas, his brother Richard and his half brother Christopher.

Mr. Watts was a three-sport letterman at Urbana High School, from which he graduated in 1954. After attending DePauw University, he graduated from the University of Illinois in 1959, and from the UI College of Law in 1961.

After being admitted to the Illinois Bar, he joined Stipes Publishing and became a partner in 1967. He remained an active partner until his death.

Mr. Watts served as a member of the Illinois National Guard from 1957 to 1963. He was a precinct committeeman for many years and treasurer of the Republican Party of Champaign.

He was also treasurer of Planned Parenthood, a member of the United Way Board of Directors, and a member of the Board of Directors of the National Academy of Arts.

He served as president of the Founders 100 Club for the University of Illinois Foundation, was president of Friends of the University of Illinois Library, and was also a founding member of the Board of Directors of the City of Champaign Public Library Foundation.

He belonged to the President's Club of the University of Illinois and was a member of the UI Foundation for over 30 years.

Private funeral services will be held. Morgan Memorial Home, Savoy, is handling arrangements.

In lieu of other expressions of sympathy, memorial donations may be made to the University of Illinois Library - Robert and Emily Watts Fund, c/o University of Illinois Foundation, Harker Hall, 1305 W. Green St., Urbana, IL 61801; or to a charity of the donor's choice.

American Flag wrote on July 03, 2012 at 9:07 am

Bob was a great man. Admired and respected by all who knew him. We always enjoyed chatting with him as he walked his dog down White Street. The neighborhood won't be the same without him.