Obituary for John Davis
John Lewis Davis, 102, of Manlius, died Tuesday. John was born February 20, 1915 at home in Harlem to Sophie (Forst) and Lewis Davis. After graduating from Columbia University in 1936, he joined the family business, Forst Meat Packing, in Kingston, NY.
John volunteered for the Army after Pearl Harbor, serving as a radar technician in WWII.
In 1940 he obtained a commercial multi-engine land/sea airplane pilot’s license. Later he became a flight simulator instructor for Curtiss-Wright.
John started working for GE as a technical writer on defense projects including the Polaris missile. His work took him to radar sites in Turkey, Greenland and Shemya, Alaska. He retired from GE in 1980 after 25 years.
John was an avid collector of stamps, coins, minerals, plants and friends. He was a lifetime member of the Gem and Mineral Society of Syracuse and Syracuse Stamp Club, as well as a past curator of minerals for Syracuse University.
John changed how we think about old age. While in his 90s he volunteered to help others with their taxes. At 99 he reluctantly gave up his driver’s license, and at 101 he travelled to Atlanta to meet his first great-granddaughter, Carson. John lived independently in his own home until he was 102.
He is survived by his wife of 65 years, Kelly Davis (Hanley); daughters, Carolyn (Jonathan Markell) Davis, Barbara Davis; sons, John (Alyssa Fein) Davis, Jared (Sandra) Davis; grandchildren, Chelsea (Peter) Reinhold, Barrett (Catherine Unkles) Davis, Suzu Davis; great-grandchild, Carson Davis; niece, Janet Siegel; nephew, Lewis (Ellen) Siegel; and great-nephews, David and Steven Siegel. He is predeceased by his sister, Edith Siegel.
Calling hours will be Friday from 4-7 p.m. at Eaton-Tubbs Fayetteville Chapel, 7191 E. Genesee St., Fayetteville. A memorial service will follow at 7:00 at the funeral home.