David E. Watters, Ph.D., was a Tibeto-Burman linguist and institute folklorist. He was adjunct faculty at the University of Oregon, Eugene, Oregon and was a visiting scholar at Tribhuvan University from 2001 to 2006, Kathmandu, Nepal. Watters was the Director of the Oregon Summer Institute of Linguistics for four years, and was a member of SIL International. Dr. Watters was considered an expert within his field, especially the Kham language, and was widely published and cited. Amongst other research in 2007 at the Research Centre for Linguistic Typology at LaTrobe University in Australia, he was working on a grammar of Kaike language, comparative study of Kiranti languages, and Himalayan languages in general a previously undescribed Tibeto-Burman language.
Dr. David Watters died in May 18, 2009 of an unexpected heart attack. He had recently been freed of bladder cancer when a blood clot formed in his leg and traveled to his heart. He leaves behind wife, Nancy, and two sons, Stephen and Daniel who are also researching Tibeto-Burman languages, two daughter-in-laws and six grandchildren. Dr. Watters had almost completed memoirs of his life, including his trials and adventures in the Himalayas, when he died.