Theodore “Ted” Watkins of Opelika was born Nov. 16, 1940 and died July 3, 2021 surrounded by family at his bedside. He was 80 years old.

He attended Opelika High School in the late 1950s and played on the OHS football team. He joined the Opelika Fire Department in 1959 and retired as Deputy Chief in 1990. Off-duty, he spent his early years hunting, fishing, boating, and camping on and around Lake Martin.

Post retirement, he dedicated his time operating Twin Pines Mobile Home Park which he developed in the early 1970s, along with spending time with his family and in his home workshop. To know him was to know a man with a heart bigger than life. He will be truly missed by his family and all those who knew him.

He is survived by his wife of 45 years, Rebecca Watkins, his children, Mike Watkins (Debbie) of Auburn, Alabama, Dorothy Watkins-Atcheson (Marlin) of Millbrook, Alabama, Shane Manley (Laura) of Opelika, Alabama, Lisa Colley of Opelika, Alabama, Jennifer Day of St. Louis, Mizzouri, and his 10 grandchildren and three great grandchildren.

He is preceded in death by his parents, Mr. Johnny F. Watkins and Mrs. Annie Bell Watkins (Opelika, Alabama), two brothers, Charles R. Watkins and Fred A. Mitchum, and  three sisters, Yvonne Quinton, Polly Grimes, and Jean Watkins.

Visitation was held  Wednesday, July 7, 2021 in the Parlor at Frederick-Dean Funeral Home from  5 until 7 p.m. Funeral service was held in the Chapel at Frederick-Dean Funeral Home, Thursday, July 8, 2021 at 11 a.m.  with Sylvia Houze officiating. Interment will follow at Garden Hills Cemetery. The Opelika Fire Department Honor Guard will escort Mr. Watkins to the graveside.

In lieu of flowers, donations in his memory can be made to Living Way Ministries Church where he was a member. 1100 Old Columbus Road, Opelika, Alabama 36804.