Mary Linda Watson Harper, 72, passed away on February15, 2021 following a long battle with frontotemporal dementia and Covid 19. She is now at her permanent home with her Lord Jesus. She was the youngest of four children born to John Henry Demosthenes Watson and Ona Mae Pittman Watson in Wilson, NC. Linda’s father died when she was 5 years old. During her high school years, Linda looked after her mother who had health problems. Linda enjoyed growing up on the family farm. She graduated from Wilson Fike High School in 1966. In 1969 she was introduced to the love of her life, Charles Harper, whom she was happily married to for 50 years.
After marrying on May 3, 1970; Linda, Charles, and his son John enjoyed living on Charles’s family farm at Knightdale. Linda and Charles had one daughter, Teresa Lynn Harper, born March 23, 1972 who died November 30, 1972. Linda always loved children and never really got over her daughter passing.
Linda worked at several different jobs as a secretary, but her most enjoyable and rewarding job was as a teacher’s assistant, with teacher Natalie Harris’ 2nd grade class at Knightdale Elementary School. She just loved helping children. Linda also taught children’s Sunday school at Knightdale Baptist for many years. She enjoyed singing in the church choir and sang until two days before moving into Zebulon House Assisted Living on November 3, 2017. For several years, prior to her dementia diagnosis, Linda visited residents at Wellington Nursing Home in Knightdale. She did not know many of the residents, but just loved stopping at each room and talking for a few minutes to cheer them up. When asked by her niece, Donna King, “why do you visit a couple of times a week”? Her reply was, “I might end up in a place like this one day”.
In addition to her husband, Charles, she is survived by her son, John, his wife Mary and granddaughter Sarah; and three nieces and three nephews. In addition to her parents, she is preceded in death by her daughter Teresa; sisters: Margaret Knowles and Frances Vick; and her brother John T. Watson.
The family wishes to extend grateful appreciation to all the staff of Zebulon House for three years of loving care she received while living there. Also, much appreciation for the staff at Duke Raleigh Hospital and The Oaks of Whitaker Glen Mayview, for Linda’s last two months of life.
A service to celebrate Linda’s life will be held at 1:00 pm, Saturday, February 20, 2021 at Knightdale Baptist Church, 15 Main Street, Knightdale, NC 27545. Burial will follow at New Knightdale Baptist Church Cemetery. A brief time to visit with the family will follow the graveside. Attendees are required to wear a face mask and practice social distancing.
In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to Knightdale Baptist Church, PO Box 21, Knightdale, NC 27545.
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