Jacquelyn Watkins, 80, executive secretary

December 29, 2002

Jacquelyn Ramsey Watkins, an executive secretary, died of pneumonia Monday at Collingswood Nursing and Rehabilitation Center in Rockville. She was 80.

Mrs. Watkins grew up in the Remington section of Baltimore in a "house of 1,000 smiles," as she often described it to family members. She graduated from Western High School in 1940 and took courses at Strayer Business School in Baltimore.

She married George Lautenberger of Baltimore in 1942.

She worked as an executive secretary for several companies, said daughter Fredericka Sutton of Laurel, and also worked several night jobs, including one in real estate sales. "She seemed always to have two jobs," Ms. Sutton said.

Mrs. Watkins later moved to Rockville. She and Mr. Lautenberger divorced in 1965. She remarried in 1967 to Glenn Berkey, and the family moved to Beltsville. After he died, she married Buck Watkins, who died in 1990.

The daughter and granddaughter of seamstresses, Mrs. Watkins made clothes for her children, Ms. Sutton said.

Mrs. Watkins was very close to her father, James Albert Ramsey, who owned a bicycle parts store in Baltimore. He died in 1944. "She really tried to emulate his life," Ms. Sutton said.

She kept in touch with friends from high school, often spending weekends at Ocean City with them, Ms. Sutton said. She also played bridge regularly with friends on Saturday nights.

A graveside memorial service will be held at 1 p.m. Friday at Loudon Park Cemetery.

In addition to Ms. Sutton, Mrs. Watkins is survived by daughter Jocelyn Christianson of Hellertown, Pa.; three grandsons; and one great-grandson.

Donations may be made to the American Cancer Society, 8219 Town Center Drive, P.O. Box 43025, Baltimore 21246-0025.

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