On Wednesday, May 20, Enterprise High School honored EHS grad Joshua Kaleb Watson by presenting senior Colby Clark with the inaugural Joshua Kaleb Watson Memorial Scholarship.
Watson – a U.S. Navy sailor – was slain in a terrorist attack at the Naval Air Station in Pensacola, Fla., in December 2019. Despite being shot multiple times, Watson still managed to make his way to first responders and provide a description of the suspect, according to reports at the time.
His parents, Benjamin and Shelia Watson, said that it was an honor to see their son’s memory honored in this way. Shelia Watson said that it especially means a lot to the family because her son loved his alma mater.
“We’re just very appreciative that Kaleb and his sacrifice against those that would harm us will continue to be remembered,” Benjamin Watson said.
The scholarship will be presented to a member of the EHS JROTC program that possesses great leadership, academic achievements and community service. Commander Dennis Griffin – who presented the scholarship – said that Clark fits the bill in all of those departments.
Clark, who also competed on both the EHS wrestling and track teams – said that he will be attending Auburn University before joining the military. He also said that of all of the scholarships this one meant the most to him.
“This is the most important scholarship that I applied for, to me,” Clark said. “I really wanted it.
“I was there that morning (Kaleb Watson’s body came home) brought my big flag and we went to the site as he passed by. It just really means a lot to me. He’s a hero here and we’ll always remember him.”
EHS Principal Brent Harrison said that this scholarship will never run out either as $1,000 – taken from the sales of parking spots that students pay to paint – will replenish the scholarship every year.
“It was awesome,” Harrison said of being able to do a scholarship in Kaleb Watson’s honor. “One of the first things we wanted to do was honor Kaleb and to be able to find a fine young man like Colby to be the first recipient makes it even better.”
The Watson family was also presented with a bronze bust honoring Kaleb Watson, as well. A Portland, Ore., man named Pat Regan commissioned the bust to be made and presented to the Watson family.
“It’s really hard to put into words,” an emotional Benjamin Watson said as he looked at the bust. “We just really appreciate that they’d honor Kaleb in this way.”