August 3, 2020

Joel Alan Watts

Joel Alan Watts, 56 of Lincoln, passed away on July 28, 2020.  He was born on March 20, 1964 in Corvallis, Oregon to Darrell and Lois (Johnston) Watts.

Joel moved to Ethiopia when he was 2 1/2 years old for 2 years, Utah for 2 years and Colombia for 1.5 years where he started his education at the age of 6.  The family moved to North Platte Nebraska when Joel was 8 years old and he was involved in Boy Scouts, and Special Olympics. He enjoyed basketball and swimming. When Joel was 13 years old the family settled in Lincoln and Joel attended several schools through junior high and high school.  Joel graduated from Lincoln High in 1986 at the age of 21.  Joel enjoyed various jobs and activities in his community which included Student Council at Lincoln High, Meals on Wheels, Shooting Stars Special Olympics, Lincoln Parks and Recreation Social Club. Joel was a member of The Arc of Lincoln and enjoyed vacations through The Arc Expeditions Program.

He was a very intelligent man who loved his family, helping others, and working hard on whatever he set his mind to. He loved a job well done and sense of accomplishment. He enjoyed gardening and spending time outdoors. He loved cooking, but more so, enjoying a good meal with others. He loved history and learning about various topics. He spent a portion of his childhood in Africa and took a special interest in African culture. He loved music and was a theatrical man who enjoyed both a good show and putting on his own show with his sense of theater, humor, and joy of dancing. He loved the weather channel. Weather was a passion.

Joel attended LEAP Day Services through Region V.  With the support of Region V Services Joel was able to experience various living opportunities during his adult years and make lifelong friends.  Joel is survived by his Mother Lois Watts.  He is preceded in death by his Father, Darrell Watts, Sister Sylvia Ann Kelly, and his Brother in Law Danny Kelly.

Joel would want to be remembered as a nice guy and a strong man, these qualities were very important to Joel.  Memorials can be made to Region V Services 3600 Union Dr Lincoln, NE 68516 and The Arc of Lincoln 6500 Holdrege St Lincoln, NE 68505.

Graveside service: 10:30 a.m. Friday, August 14, 2020 at Wyuka Cemetery, 3600 “O” Street, Lincoln.

When attending services please abide by local and CDC Covid-19 guidelines.


  1. “Another Lincoln High Job Well Done.”

  2. Joel,

    You will always be a gentleman and will be held forever dear, by those who were lucky enough to know and be around you. Your smile certainly has the power to light up a room and will continue to light a spot in my heart everytime I remember you.

    Thank you for all you taught me. Fair winds and following seas (from one adventurer to another), until we meet again!

    Very Respectfully,

  3. I did not know Joel but my daughter did from LEAP. She will miss him. She has shared with me that she how sweet of a guy Joel was and how greatly he will be missed. Im so sorry for your loss.

  4. I knew Joel and his family as a kid in Ethiopia. His parents and mine were close friends from that time onward. I knew the Watts family as Darrel and Silvia share the same birthday as my own. Every birthday I take a moment to remember them, and smile inwardly with love for their entire family. Joel was a good kid, a good person, a good Man. Lois, I love you very much. I wish I could be there to give you a big hug. I will never forget your family.

  5. I know Joel Alan Watts from leap to he always love his morning coffee when his staff Rick Robinson brings to him we will miss you Joel I’m thinking about you lot rest in peace Angel you made huge impact on people at day services thank you for you love to us I will keep you my thoughts and prayers to the Watts family.


Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *