Official Website of the U.S. Marine Raider Association & Foundation

Select Page

Obituaries > WATT, CARL W.

Carl W. Watt was a World War II combat veteran who served 27 years as a motorcycle patrolman with the Dallas Police Department.

Mr. Watt, 81, died April 6 [2007] of natural causes at his Rowlett home. He had health problems that included emphysema and cancer, his family said.

Services will be at 4 p.m. Saturday at Restland Memorial Park.

“He might have been a grumpy old guy, but he would do anything for anybody,” said his son, W. Keith Watt of Garland. “He helped out his kids a bunch. He helped people whenever he could.”

Mr. Watt didn’t talk much about his military or police service.

“It was kind of the era he grew up in. You kind of had to be tough to survive,” his son said.

Born in Sweetwater, Texas, Mr. Watt dropped out of high school to serve in the Marines during World War II.

He received a Bronze Star and a Purple Heart for his service in the Gilbert and Solomon Islands in the South Pacific, his son said. Mr. Watt was stabbed in the chest with a bayonet and battled malaria for more than a year.

“He never talked about that stuff,” his son said.

His family gained insight into his service from stories he told a fellow Marine in Dallas.

Mr. Watt was part of the Makin Island raid as a member of the 2nd Marine Raider Battalion. He also took part in battles at Tulagi, Bougainville and Guadalcanal. He was part of the Long Patrol, a group of Marines who lived off the land and rice taken from dead enemy soldiers.

Keith Watt said he learned that his father had fought at Tulagi in the Solomon Islands while doing a report for an American history class in 10th grade.

After completing his military service, Mr. Watt moved to Garland, where his parents had moved while he was in the Marines.

He joined the Dallas Police Department about 1950.

“He started on the two-wheelers and did that for 12 years, then he spent his last 15 years on three-wheelers in downtown Dallas,” his son said.

On Nov. 22, 1963, Mr. Watt was 100 to 150 feet behind President John F. Kennedy’s car in the ill-fated procession, his son said.

Mr. Watt dabbled in real estate sales after his 1978 retirement from the Police Department, his son said.

He was a Mason and a member of the Scottish Rite.

“He liked staying busy,” his son said. “He and my mother traveled quite a bit until she passed away.”

Mr. Watt’s wife, Nancy, died in 1990.

In addition to Keith, Mr. Watt is survived by three other sons, Carl B. Watt of Salt Lake City, Mark Z. Watt of San Antonio and Mike Watt of Balch Springs; five grandchildren; and four great-grandchildren.

Memorial contributions may be made to a charity of choice.

Historian’s note: Mr. Watt served in the 3rd Raider Battalion and did not participate in the Tulagi invasion, the Makin raid or the Long Patrol.