For Grandpa

My sweet Grandpa passed away last week. He was 88. In addition to his many accomplishments, awards and honors, he was also just the best guy I know.  He and I had a very special relationship. I already miss him.

I will be posting some of the memories I’d been mailing to him, so everyone can share in his wonderfulness. In the meantime, if you’d like to read his official obit and leave a comment below, please do. He loved so many people, and I know his bright spirit lives on.

We love you, Grandpa!

Richard Everett “Dick” Davis, 88, was born on May 1, 1923 near Idaho Springs, Colo. at Floyd Hill to Margaret and Shelby Davis. He often liked to say that he arrived in a May Day basket with his twin brother, Bob.

He attended Idaho Springs High School, where he was a natural leader, popular student, and active Boy Scout. He was elected both Class President and Head Boy his senior year, and graduated in the spring of 1941. Dick would remain devoted to Idaho Springs for his entire life, serving as president of the Idaho Springs High School Alumni Association from 1994–2005, and continuing as an active member of the board until his passing.

Dick enlisted with the Army Air Force in January of 1942. He served as a 2nd lieutenant bombardier with the fourth army air corps until the war ended in 1945, when he returned home to attend college at the University of Colorado at Boulder.

At CU, Dick was a dedicated student, a proud member of Phi Kappa Tau fraternity, the university’s hiking club, and the civil engineering society, which he led as president his senior year. He also played co-ed intramural volleyball and was a long-time admirer of his teammate, Dee.

They married on August 27, 1950 and were married for 61 years.

Dick was hired by Rio Grand railroad in 1952 and was steadily promoted through a variety of positions. The Davis family moved between Utah and Colorado before settling permanently in Arvada in 1969. He retired in 1985 as Superintendent of Engineering, overseeing structures, buildings and bridges. Davis Road in Salt Lake City still leads to the superintendent’s office as a testament to his 34 years of service.

Dick was passionate about so many facets of his life. As a volunteer, he devoted his retirement years to many causes, including tutoring at Stott and Vanderhoof Elementary, volunteering for the PBS Channel 6 auction, chairing the CU class of 1950 reunion committee, and participating in Boy Scout activities with his sons and grandsons. Dick was a recipient of the Silver Beaver award in 1974, the Denver Area Council’s highest honor for Boy Scout volunteers. He was so proud that his four sons and one grandson obtained their Eagle Scout, scouting’s highest rank.

He also traveled widely, visiting 48 states, Europe and Asia with Dee during their life together.

He was a loving father and grandfather to his five children and 13 grandchildren, and he instilled in them a love of service, respect for nature, and a deep appreciation for family.

Dick passed away on May 4, 2011. He is survived by his beloved wife, Dee; his son Kirk and his wife, Lorna; his son Kip and his wife, Lynn; his son Kelly and his wife, Michelle; his daughter Heidi and her husband, Keith; his son Kerry and his wife, Jani; and 13 grandchildren: Eric, Hilary, Grant, Morgan, Ali, Hope, Ian, Kanessa, Kaylan, Faith, Grace, Joy, and Hannah.

Donations may be made to:

Denver Area Council

Boy Scouts of America

10455 W. 6th Avenue, Suite 100

Denver, CO 80215

Clear Creek Alumni Association

65 Brentwood Street

Lakewood, CO 80226

OASIS Institute

In memory of Richard Davis, Jefferson  County, Colorado

7710 Carondelet Avenue

St. Louis, MO 63105

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5 Comments

Filed under Family

5 responses to “For Grandpa

  1. Oh my, feeling so sad and so wonderful at the same time.

    Wonderful elements is that you had such a lovely grandpa, and could spend a lovely time with him. You must be impacted by his greatness, please accept my regards and prayers for his soul.

    Sad about his death, but this is how life goes on. Consider sharing some photos of him. Peace!

  2. Jessica

    Hils, I am so sorry to hear about your Grandpa. I know how much you loved him and looked up to him. He was obviously an amazing man, he was your Grandpa, how could he not be totally awesome! If you need anything I’m here for you.
    Love, Jess

  3. Aunt Shirley

    Hilary, I share your sadness about the loss of your Grandfather. He was a bright light in my life — always cheerful, always smiling, always interested in those around him. I never failed to feel buoyed up after spending a day or a few hours with him. He CARED about people, and he acted to show them in so many ways that you wrote about in his obituary. No one like him will pass this way again, but we will ALWAYS remember him by putting a smile on our faces and trying to be better at caring for others as he did. I loved him too.
    AUNT SHIRLEY

  4. Laura Hoganson

    I volunteered with your Grandpa for many years at Rocky Mountain PBS (channel 6). He was always delightful and spoke so lovingly of his family. He was a hard worker, but enjoyed life at the same time. We knew we could rely on Dick to work many shifts during auction, and that he’d do a great job. We will miss him too.

  5. Barbara Tonn Schneider

    Your Grandpa sounds like a wonderful man. I too grew up on Floyd Hill and went to Idaho Springs High School. Many fine people came from that humble mountain area. I went to school with a Dick Davis, class of ’57 at Idaho Springs High School. He may be a relative of yours. Your Grandpa would be so proud of you for this memorial site.

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