Jeffrey “Jeff” Allen Watts passed away unexpectedly on December 17, 2016. His forty-two years on this earth were spent making a difference each and every day.
He will forever live on in our memory as the outgoing, helpful, caring, giving, and humorous man he was. Jeff’s love knew no bounds and we all can attest to the way that love touched us. He shared a special closeness with his parents, being only a phone call away, talking about anything and everything. “Jeff was the funnest person I’ve ever met…he’d crack you up,” his dad recalls. “He was a lot smarter than he thought he was.” A humble and simple man who cared greatly for others, he never met a stranger and kept in touch with all the folks he went to school with over the years.
Although a professional in veterinary care, Jeff didn’t always have a deep-seated love for animals. It developed after high school when he and his family moved from Hendersonville up to Gallatin. Moving meant having a proper yard for pets, and Jeff’s parents bought two Labrador Retrievers, one for Jeff and one for his brother Andy. From that point forward his love for dogs, cats, and everything in between blossomed.
For over twenty years Jeff dedicated himself to his work and ministry at McMillan Veterinary Clinic in Gallatin. “His care and love of animals was unmatched,” according to his brother Andy. “He always had a smile and he was ready with a hug when you needed it most,” his work family recalls. “Jeff never said ‘no’ to any task,” they remember, and his work ethic was an inspiration. In fact, Jeff so loved his work and those with whom he worked that he rarely ever took vacation time. It wasn’t just a paycheck to Jeff; it was his life.
It’s not hard to understand that Jeff impacted everyone with whom he came into contact. His friendly and giving spirit caused his neighbors to love and look out for him. The fact that he was selfless was perhaps the reason why people were so drawn to him. He made time for and cared greatly for those he knew, no matter where or how the acquaintance was made.
In his spare time, Jeff enjoyed getting out of the house and going on walks, especially at Moss-Wright Park in Goodlettsville. He enjoyed watching college football and listening to music. His tastes were for alternative and metal rock among other genres, with Deftones being his all-time favorite band. Jeff also enjoyed food like everyone else on the planet, but his favorites included Moore’s Hot Chicken and just about anything his mom cooked. He especially loved her cornbread dressing and would wash it all down with a tall glass of sweet tea.
He was preceded in death by his grandparents and his mentor who was like a second father, Dr. Jerry McMillan. Jeff leaves behind those he loved most in this world; his loving parents, James and Elizabeth Watts; brother, Andy (Vivian) Watts; nephew, Seann Watts; niece, Vianna Watts; many other extended family members; his life-long friend, Tony Swindle; his work family from McMillan Veterinary Clinic of Gallatin; cherished neighbors of Hickory Village Condominiums; countless treasured friends; and his beloved canine companion, Penny.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in Jeff’s honor to The Jeff Watts Memorial Fund. All donations may be sent directly to Sumner Bank and Trust, 240 West Broadway, Gallatin, TN 37066. Please be sure to make your checks payable to The Jeff Watts Memorial Fund. Through an alliance with McMillan Veterinary Clinic, all proceeds of the memorial fund will be used to assist pets in need of proper care to honor Jeff and his love of animals.
The family will receive friends on Tuesday, December 20, 2016 from 4 p.m.-8 p.m. and again on Wednesday, December 21, 2016 from 9 a.m.-10 a.m. A Celebration of Jeff’s Life will be held following visitation on Wednesday at 10 a.m. Interment will follow in the Garden of Prayer of Hendersonville Memory Gardens.