Mr. Joseph E. “Joe” Davis, Sr., 75, passed away Tuesday, Feb. 11, 2014, at his home of heart failure.
He was born in Austin, Texas, on Sept. 17, 1938, and moved to Fort Meade, Fla., at the age of 2 with his family.
He was a lifelong Fort Meade resident, graduating from Fort Meade High School in 1956, earning the honor of senior of distinction.
After graduation, he graduated from The Citadel in 1960 and went on to become a U.S. Air Force veteran, holding the rank of captain upon his separation in the Air Force, and serving his time in active duty in Alexandria, La., and Tripoli, Libya.
He was an avid car enthusiast, Miami Hurricane fan and booster, and was retired as president of Estech Chemical Co.
He was a longtime member of First Baptist Church of Fort Meade, where he served as Deacon Emeritus, choir member, Sunday school teacher and formerly assisted with the youth program of the church. He had his home open to a countless number of youth, as he loved to help others who needed that helping hand.
He was responsible for having the Fort Meade Fine Arts Auditorium expanded to its current size, and along with other contributions to his community, he served as mayor of Fort Meade and sat on the City Commission for 25 years.
He is survived by his loving wife of 53 years, Audrey Davis of Fort Meade; two sons, Ed (Melanie) Davis of Valrico, Fla., and Blake Davis of Fort Meade; two grandchildren, Bailey Davis and Cassidy Davis; a special devoted niece, April Brown of Fort Meade; and several nieces and nephews. Extended family is common in the Davis household and among those special extended members are Kevin and Rita Collier; and son Drew, all of Homeland, Fla.
He was preceded in death by his parents, William L. Davis Sr. and Ivelo Hall Davis; and two brothers, William L. “Bill” Davis Jr., and Richard H. “Dick” Davis.
Visitation was held from 10 a.m. to 11 a.m., Saturday, Feb. 15, 2014, at the First Baptist Church, 307 E. Broadway Ave., Fort Meade. Memorial service followed at 11 a.m. in the church sanctuary with the Rev. Kenny Slay officiating.
In lieu of flowers, those wishing to make contributions may do so to the First Baptist Church Building Fund, 307 E. Broadway, Fort Meade, FL 33841.
Arrangements are by Hancock Funeral Home of Fort Meade.