Merle Watson Tractor Rollover Death Famous son of Doc Watson

Posted by on Nov 2, 2010 in Farm Insurance, Insurance

8 Feb 1949, North Carolina , d. 23 October 1985).
Son of Doc Watson, Merle died tragically as a result of a tractor accident on his farm in Lenoir, NC.
Here’s what happened:
On the night of October 22, 1985, Merle was restless and unable to sleep. Some time after midnight, he went to the basement, tied on his nail apron, and proceeded to trim some red beech paneling that had been misgrooved, making it ready to panel his basement walls. The saw blade hit an undetected fault in the grain and a large piece of hardwood splintered off, embedding itself in the muscle of Merle’s upper arm. He grabbed his all-weather jacket, fumbled around in the pocket for the key to his farm tractor, and left to seek help. Spotting a lighted house at the summit of a steep hill, he continued in that direction, praying he would not black out before he got there.

With the aid of the couple whose home he had come to, Merle successfully removed the huge splinter. His wound bandaged, but weak from the trauma and loss of blood, Merle left to return home. Tragically, on the way back down the steep incline of the couple’s drive, the tractor brakes locked, leading it over a high embankment. Merle Watson was thrown off the large tractor which then landed on him, killing him instantly. The life of one of acoustic music’s brightest and most beloved musicians was at a premature end. Eddy Merle Watson’s earthly life may indeed be over, but his many fans are convinced that he is now a member in good standing of the highly acclaimed Band of Acoustically Inclined Angels and periodically peers down with great pride on his beautiful memorial garden.

we would rather have Merle around. His legacy Lives on. See Below.

1985

Merle Watson dies tragically in a tractor accident on the night of October 23rd.

1988

Doc is awarded the National Heritage Fellowship by the National Endowment for the Arts.

1988

The first Merle fest is held in remembrance of Merle Watson.

1997

Doc receives the the National Medal of the Arts from President Clinton.

2004

Doc is awarded the Lifetime Achievement Award by the National Academy of Recording Arts & Sciences at their 2004 Grammy Awards show.

and most of his music and his fathers can be found here; along with a wealth of history

http://www.docsguitar.com/albumdetail.php?album=12


and l;astly, here is one of the largest Bluegrass and acoustic music festivals in the country; named after Merle of course. I have attended this festival personally. It is highly recommended for its music quality and  Fun factor! check it out.

www.merlefest.org

    1 Comment

  1. Doc and his son came to New Haven [ do not ask what year] `80`s earlyish . Any way Merl was trying to get Pop`s into the electric bass involved with the `gig` and Doc heard the motions of setting up and the plugging in when he cocked his head towards the bassplayer and outrightly wanted to know if it was “Black and Decker” . we were in the front row cracking up . Sad to hear Merle passed on . may he be with the acoustic band of angels

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  1. Doc Watson, Blind But Now I See • The Mast Farm Inn - [...] Doc Watson’s life and career, from the details of the tragic loss of his son Merle Watson in a …

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