Dec. 5, 1935 — March 7, 2017
A loving husband, father and friend, Jerry Davis passed away at home surrounded by his family. He was a man of faith and heart and humor.
He could be seen around town walking hand in hand with his wife, riding the bus, playing bocce or talking with a friend. He could often be found at his desk, writing letters, designing envelopes, enclosing articles — all matched to the interests of his hundreds of recipients — people he had known for 70 years, or had just met. Everyone was equal in Jerry’s heart.
Born in Port Townsend, Washington, he was the son of Elmer Davis and Kathleen Harker Davis. He bounced around a bit before landing in Mount Angel, Oregon, where he attended Mount Angel Seminary High School.
In 1955, he made his profession at the monastery, where he took the name Brother John. At the Abbey he tended the grounds and the animals, and eventually moved to the print shop, which prepared him for his future work at The Daily Astorian.
Later, at Star of the Sea Parish and School, Jerry began in custodial and maintenance work, where soon his knack for squirreling things away led to a great collection of treasures, and highlighted his belief in sharing, renewing and making things available to anyone in need. In 2006, the liquidation of his 40 years’ of collections became known as the “Sale of the Century,” and preceded his retirement.
He is survived by his wife of nearly 49 years, Sharon Davis; his children, Marco, Ken (Kevin), Steven, Lisa and Emily; his grandchildren, Ventell, Julia, Anna, Ava and Hayden; as well as brothers, John Davis and Neil Willestoft; sister-in-law, Teresa Williamson; and numerous nieces and nephews.
The funeral mass will be held on March 13 at 11 a.m., preceded by the rosary at 10:30 a.m., at St. Mary, Star of the Sea Catholic Church, at 15th Street and Grand Avenue in Astoria, Oregon.
In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to St. Mary’s Memorial Fund, Astoria Warming Center, St. Mary’s Choir Trip to Barcelona, or to the charity of your choice.
Thank you to Lower Columbia Hospice, Dr. Law and the numerous people who supported and cared for Jerry and his family.