George M. Davis Jr.

Published 4:13 pm Wednesday, May 27, 2015

BOYKINS—George Marriott Davis Jr., 88, passed away on Memorial Day, May 25, 2015, at his residence in Franklin, Virginia.

Born on July 15, 1926, to George M. Davis Sr. and Annie Lee Felton Davis, he was a Nansemond County native and a 1943 graduate of Whaleyville High School.

After attending from The College of William and Mary, he served in the U.S. Army from 1944-46. After his stint in WWII, he graduated from Virginia Polytechnic Institute (VPI), where he lettered in football and became a lifelong fan and supporter of its athletics and academic programs. It was while he was attending VPI that Mr. Davis met Mary Jim Ramsey of Abingdon, Virginia, a Radford student, who would later become his wife.

Starting their married life in Boykins, Virginia in 1950, he taught, coached and later was named principal at Boykins High School. In addition to his time at BHS, he also spent several years teaching agriculture at Southampton High School.

After leaving the education field, Mr. Davis worked with Virginia Carolina Chemical Corporations (VC) for 10 years before joining Meherrin Agricultural and Chemical Company in 1966. At Meherrin, Mr. Davis became president in 1974, a position he held until his retirement in 1992.

Mr. Davis will be remembered for a lifetime of commitment, service and leadership to his family and friends and his community and state.

He was a member of Boykins Lions Club, Branchville Ruritan Club and Boykins Masonic Lodge, where he was a 66-year Mason. From 1964-1983, Mr. Davis represented Boykins on the Southampton Board of Supervisors and served as chairman for eight years. He also chaired the Franklin-Southampton Economic Development Commission and sat on the Southampton Memorial Hospital Board as a member and chairman.

In 1976, Mr. Davis, appointed by then-Governor Mills Godwin, also served on the Radford University Board of Visitors for 10 years including five as rector. In 1988, and in appreciation for his dedication and leadership, Radford University named an academic building in his honor.

As an active member of Boykins Baptist Church, he taught Sunday school for 50 years and was a lifetime deacon and chairman of trustees.

Mr. Davis was predeceased by his wife of 61 years, Mary Jim Ramsey Davis; his parents; and his sister, Nell Saunders.

Left to cherish his memory are his daughters, Marilyn Davis Krupilis and husband, John, and Carolyn Duff Davis, all of Atlanta; a son, George “Jim” M. Davis III, and wife, Dawn, of Franklin; five grandchildren, Ramsey Wagner and husband, Blake, Elizabeth Jenkins and husband, Keith, John Davis Krupilis, Meredith V. Davis and G. Marriott Davis IV; one great-granddaughter, Parker Leigh Wagner; and sisters Alice Turner, Juanita Nystrom, Bet Williams and Mary Fischer.

The family thanks his devoted care givers Sallie Barnes, Ruby Ricks, Elizabeth Hamlin, Terrie Myrick, Ida Vaughn and Arlean Everette. As Mr. Davis battled Parkinson’s Disease for over 25 years, their care for him during this time is deeply appreciated.

The funeral service will be conducted at 11 a.m. on Saturday, May 30, in Boykins Baptist Church with the Rev. Raymond Bunn officiating. The graveside service will be at 2 p.m. on Sunday, May 31, in Green Spring Presbyterian Church in Abingdon.

Memorial donations may be made to Boykins Baptist Church, P.O. Box 316, Boykins, VA 23827. Wright Funeral Home, Franklin, has charge of arrangements.