When Walter Watson was born in 1910, the world population was a lot smaller than it is today. Instead of seven billion, give or take, it was considerably under two billion.


He grew up to become Dr. Walter Watson and has delivered many babies as the population increased. When he came to the phone yesterday, at age 101, he said he treated each new child as his own.

DR. WALTER WATSON: I tried to deliver every baby just like it was my own child

MONTAGNE: Dr. Watson started bringing babies into the world in 1947. He says he's delivered more than 15,000.

WATSON: I'll tell you, it's very seldom that I go around to any location in this area and somebody doesn't come up and speak to me, say you delivered me or you delivered my child.

INSKEEEP: You delivered my child, they say. Fred Huiet was among the first babies delivered by Dr. Watson. In 1947, his parents drove 18 miles to reach Watson's practice in Augusta, Georgia.

FRED HUIET: My parents lived in Trenton, where he was from. And the people of Trenton didn't believe there was any other doctor but Dr. Watson. And anytime there's a group, a high school reunion or family gathering, we always start the conversation by, Did Dr. Watson deliver you?

MONTAGNE: Dr. Walter Watson came late to the medical field. After college, he was principal at a high school and coached the football team. That helped him save money for medical school. He left medical school to serve in the military for a few years.

INSKEEEP: And then returned to Augusta to set up a practice that has not stopped since. His patients over the years included Dot Parrish.

DOT PARRISH: You know, it's mighty nice when a doctor takes care of you from the time you're 16 years old and delivers my first child. And then he turned around and delivered my grandchildren.

They just don't come like Dr. Watson anymore. And our family has just crossed in so many ways.

INSKEEEP: These days, at age 101, Dr. Watson has stopped working in the delivery rooms but still makes the rounds on the labor and delivery floor of University Hospital in Augusta, Georgia.

He has five children, 16 grandchildren, 20 great-grandchildren.

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