Kenneth W. Watterson was born May, 1947 in Lufkin, Texas though his family moved to Colleyville Texas where Ken was raised as a child. Kenneth joined the United States Marine Corps in Jan 1965 and took basic in San Diego, CA. After basic training he received orders to Viet Nam and arrived there July 1965. After thirteen months he was re-assigned to Camp Pendleton, CA.. After one year of training he volunteered to go back to Viet Nam for his second tour in July 1967 where he received orders to Golf Battery 3rd Bn. 11th Marines, 1st Marine Div. During that time he received wounds on his 21st birthday while out on operations. Again, after 13 months of duty in Viet Nam he was assigned to Camp Pendleton, CA.. Ken is very proud to have served with Medal of Honor recipient Col. Barney Barnum USMC Ret. in 1965 when he earned his medal and considers Barney as his mentor. He was discharged in January of 1969 as Sgt. and returned home to Texas. During Ken’s tour of duty he married his high school sweetheart, Lacelia (Cige) Mayes while on R&R in Hawaii, February of 1968.
Ken has been involved with many different military organizations including eight years serving on the Board of Trustees as National Vice Commandant of the Southern Division of the Marine Corps League. He was awarded National Marine of the Year 2007-2008 from the Marine Corps League and was recipient of the 2007 Presidential Call to Service Award, Life Time Achievement. Ken served as Vice Chairman of the Texas National Cemetery Foundation for four years and served as the chairman of the All Veterans Faces of Freedom Memorial committee.
Other committees included veterans’ memorials in Kaufman, Terrell and Rockwall TX, as well as a memorial statue for the 5th Marine Div at the Marine Museum at Quantico, VA. He is also the Past President of the Fifth Marine Division Association. As if those activities don’t keep him busy he is also the Chairman and founder of The Dallas Fort Worth (D/FW) Honor Guard and serves on numerous committees including but not limited to the Homeless Veterans Services of Dallas. The D/FW Honor Guard provides funeral honors and provides transportation of OIF and OEF veterans to area medical centers for rehabilitation appointments. He continually assists combat wounded warriors of Operation Iraq Freedom and Operation Enduring Freedom, especially those suffering from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) and Trauma Brain Injury (TBI). Ken also serves as President of Homeless Veterans Services of Dallas and currently chairs the committee for the Veterans Resource Center and the Veterans Homeless Day Center. All of these activities and positions play a significant role in Ken’s heart and spirit, which is why he dedicates 100% to each cause.
Ken is a life member of the Marine Corps League, Veterans of Foreign Wars, Disabled Veterans of America, Viet Nam Veterans of America, Military Order of the Purple Hearts, AM Vets, 1st Marine Division Association, 3rd Marine Division Association & 5th Marine Division Association.
Kenneth’s honorable decorations include:
Marine Corps Good Conduct,
Purple Heart Medal
National Defense Service Medal,
Presidential Unit Citation W/2 Stars,
Viet Nam Service Medal-with one Silver Star,
Republic of Viet Nam Campaign Medal,
Republic of Viet Nam Gallantry Cross,
Republic of Viet Nam Civil Action Medal.