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Veterans Outreach of Wisconsin
Life Story / Obituary
A lifelong resident of the community he loved, David Davies, Sr. was well respected and so well loved by all who knew him. He was a man of honor and courage who experienced so many of the best things that life has to offer, but what made these experiences so extraordinary was sharing them with the ones he loved. David worked hard in everything he did, but he also took the time to enjoy life along the way. Life will never be the same without him here, but he leaves behind a timeless legacy that his loved ones will proudly carry on in his footsteps.
During the first half of the 1940s, the eyes of our nation were focused overseas as WWII raged on. There was dancing in the streets with the end of the war in September of 1945, and in the weeks and months that followed we were adjusting to being a nation at peace once again. It was during this transitional time that David and Betty (Fergus) Davies were also filled with great joy as they announced the birth of the baby boy they named David Joel on June 16, 1946, in Racine, Wisconsin. He was one of two children as he was raised in the family home alongside his sister, Dee Dee. In many ways David, or DJ as he was sometimes known, was a young boy of his generation. He attended local schools including Washington Park High School where he ran hurdles in track and field and played with the Kiwanis Youth Symphony, traveling through Europe playing the trumpet. In addition to holding down his studies Dave had a part-time job working for Lee Bolton at Lee’s Flowers. Through his work there he developed a lifelong friendship as they shared a common interest in aviation. David went on to graduate from high school in 1964.
In 1966, David enlisted in the United States Army. While stationed in Camp Zama, Japan, he received a special opportunity to join the Army Band and tour the world playing music during the days of the Vietnam War. Following his tour in Japan, David was stationed at Fort Leavenworth and enrolled in flight school where he received his first of many ratings. On occasion, David rented planes to fly home to Wisconsin to visit his parents, often without informing his commanding officer. On one such occasion his weekend excursion resulted in a mischievous plot, causing him to fly immediately back to base. David made it just in time to play his bugle at a flag lowering ceremony, miraculously avoiding discipline.
There was never anything that was more near and dear to Dave’s heart than his loved ones. He was blessed to become a father to his two sons, David Jr. and Daniel. Dave also became a stepfather to Adam and Amanda.
A lifelong resident of Racine, DJ was a well-respected member of the business community. After his time in the Army, he returned to Racine to work for his family company, D.W. Davies & Co., Inc. which was founded by his father in 1955. Well respected in the business community, he held several titles within the company over the years including vice president, president, and finally, CEO.
Although he loved Racine, Dave also loved his home away from home in Scottsdale, Arizona. He enjoyed the warm weather there, riding his Harley Davidson through the desert and the sunset views over his favorite mountain, Camelback Mountain. Interestingly, he wasn’t always a fan of motorcycles as when he was in his teens he went down in gravel while riding a motorcycle. For years, motorcycles were not an option for him, which meant they weren’t an option for his sons, either. Years later he discovered Dan riding a motorcycle behind his back, so he not only made sure Dan took a riding class, but he joined the class himself as well. Soon after that, Dave was found to have a dressed out Harley and took road trips to Alaska and Nova Scotia.
Throughout his life Dave was a man of many interests. He had a passion for aviation and acquired his first airplane, a Beech Bonanza, in 1971. DJ went on to own several more throughout his lifetime. He also enjoyed sharing his knowledge of flying as a flight instructor and went on to train many local pilots. David was also a lover of travel and made it a priority to do so as often as possible. He took frequent trips to the West Indies, went sailing in The British Virgin Islands, and toured Hawaii in addition to his motorcycle adventures. Dave loved playing soccer and golf, going on skiing trips with his sons in the winter, and had the time of his life on a spontaneous yet memorable New Year’s Eve Grateful Dead show with his son Dan in 1991 in Oakland, California.
A down to earth man whose mission in life was to make others happy, David Davies, Sr. was a blessing in the lives of so many. He wore many hats including son, father, grandfather, boss, and all around cool guy, but he was always so happy with whatever role he was in. Whether he was flying, skiing with his sons, listening to some great music, or running the family company, Dave was passionate about everything he did. Someone who cared for others and was truly selfless, he impacted the lives of those too numerous to count. Deeply loved, David will be forever missed.
David Joel “DJ” Davies Sr. passed away peacefully on December 22, 2018 at The Woods of Caledonia. David is survived by his sons, David J. Davies, Jr. and Daniel W. (Danelle) Davies; step-children Adam (Brooke) Kraft and Amanda (Jason) Ingle; sister, Dee Dee Davies; grandchildren, Larkyn Everly Davies, Payton “Pip” Schultz, Skylar Joy Schultz, Aden and Adison Kraft, Mikayla Haase, and many other family, friends and loved ones. In addition to his parents, Dave was also was preceded in death by his uncles Robert “Bud,” Charles “Chuck,” and N. Owen “Bump” Davies. Funeral services will be held at the funeral home, Friday, January 4, 2019, 11:00 a.m. Relatives and friends may meet with the family prior to the service 9:30 a.m. until 11:00 a.m. A celebration of life reception will follow at Preservation Hall. Entombment with full military honors will be held at West Lawn Memorial Park. Gifts of remembrance may be made to Veterans Outreach of Wisconsin (https://vetsoutreachwi.us).