Lolita Mae (Reynolds) Watkins

Lolita Mae (Reynolds) Watkins, 84, passed away Sept. 1, 2012, in her Pine Cove home from natural causes. Born Oct. 10, 1927, in Bell, Calif., to Barton Henry and Mary Elizabeth (Dedrick) Reynolds. Her siblings were Merle, Warren and Camille who deceased before her. She was raised in Long Beach and Compton.


She was a graduate of Compton College upper division, where she was a member of Sigma Delta Xi. She worked in a jewelry store and decided to work as a secretary for Watkins Realty in Compton in 1948. Her boss, Jesse Francis Watkins, became her husband on March 18, 1949. They were married 56 years until he passed away in 2006.

Lolita worked 50 years side-by-side with Jesse in all his business endeavors, which included Watkins Professional Building in Compton, Watkins Realty located in Corona and in Lake Elsinore, Lake Elsinore Recreation Area, Inc., located at Lake Elsinore City (State) Park and Marina, Marina Food Concessions, Inland Tree Nursery and High Country Ranches in Anza. Lolita’s expertise in interior decorating and landscaping made them a great team as they built apartment complexes, hospital and rehabilitation center, professional buildings, parks, marinas, tract, custom and ranch homes and numerous land developments throughout Southern California. She was a Christian woman and a loving mother who adored her family. She was a unique woman who will be remembered as being strong, wise, honorable, hardworking, patient and trustworthy. She was an epitome of class and grace.

Lolita’s hobbies were playing the piano and organ, archery, bowling, horseback riding, game hunting in Wyoming, horticulture, reading and travel. She loved Mexican food. She enjoyed her travels throughout Mexico, Baja, Hawaii and the United States. She especially loved the coast and the mountains.

Lolita is survived by six children: Darlena Rae Klarer, Linda Kay Jones, Brent Barton Watkins, Lance Jess Watkins, Marlene Rene Watkins and Scott Van Watkins. Six grandchildren: Kimberly Malia Jarrett, Kandace Marie Gee-Silvola, Marcus Conrad Klarer and Kourtney Mary George, Bronson Scott Jones and Danny Van Watkins. Nine great-grandchildren: Claire Elle and Steven Morley Jarrett; Hailey Marie Gee, Anja and Kalervo Silvola; Alexa Mae Klarer, Nikolas, Gino and Alexis George. Also, a sister-in-law, Janet Catherine Clark, and two nieces, Mary Ann Sachtleben and Betty Lou Clark.

Lolita had a private burial on Sept. 28, 2012, and was laid to rest with her deceased husband at Riverside National Cemetery.