A "blue star mother" with a love for veterans, family and cooking, and a Hesperia resident for more than 35 years, Harriet Watters died on Oct. 27 from chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. She was 92.


"She loved all the veterans anybody that served for the country, she loved them all," son Earl Watters said.


A family of United States Army veterans, father Thomas Watters served from 1944 to 1945, brother Thomas Watters Jr. served from 1956 to 1958 during the Cold War and Earl Watters served during the Vietnam War from 1965 to 1967, according to Earl Watters. Harriet Watters also helped during World War II by making bombs in Los Angeles.


Since her children served in the military, Harriet Watters is known as a "blue star mother." She also helped place a "blue star mother" plaque in Newberry Springs, according to Earl Watters.


During the Vietnam War, she cooked 100 chickens for United States Marines who were brought to Buena Park from Camp Pendleton. One Marine stood and asked, "Who cooked this chicken?" Harriet Watters didn't speak up, thinking it didn't taste good. As Earl Watters recalled of his mother's story, the Marine said, "Whoever cooked this chicken, it's the best chicken I ever ate in my life,"


"She laughed and said, 'I cooked it,'" he said.


"She'd cook everything and it was from scratch, it wasn't from a box," said daughter Phyllis Fletcher, with her mother having a real love for her family being one of 13 siblings.


"Anytime anybody came up from down the hill she always made them stay and eat," said Earl Watters, who currently lives in New Mexico. "She'd cook a good meal; corn bread, beans, chicken and dumplings, peach or cherry cobbler."


One thing she loved to do was go fishing, Fletcher said, with the two packing a lunch and going to Mojave Narrows to fish up to five times a week.


"She enjoyed herself," Fletcher said. "It was peaceful."


Her children said Harriet Watters also loved thrift shops.


"Just to look around, somebody else's treasure could be something I've never seen before," Earl Watters' fiancee, Deborah Fisk said.


Harriet Watters was born in Pitcher, Okla. on Oct.. 6, 1921 to Charles and Claire Lyons and grew up on a farm in Carthage Missouri. She married Thomas Watters in 1937 and had six children: Loretta Moore (1938), Thomas Watters Jr. (1940, deceased), Phyllis Fletcher (1942), Earl Watters (1945), Connie Moorrees (1950) and Brenda Rhea (1956).


Harriet and Thomas Watters moved to Apple Valley in the early 1970s, after upon visiting Earl, Harriet saw "how beautiful it was at night" with few people, traffic and sirens. A "Missouri girl," the area reminded her of home and farm life, according to Earl Watters.


The couple moved to Hesperia in 1974, and Thomas Watters passed away in 1979.


Five children, 18 grandchildren, 30 great-grandchildren, and seven great-great-grandchildren survive Harriet.


"It seems like she's been with us all of our lives," Earl Watters said. "Everybody's going to miss her."