Don Davis, 71, of rural Ridgeway, passed away at his home Sunday, Dec. 22, 2013. Friends called from 3-7 p.m. Thursday, Dec. 26, at the Lindstrom Funeral Home in Cresco, as well as one hour prior to services at the church. Funeral services were Friday, Dec. 27, 2 at 11 a.m. at the Immanuel Lutheran Church in Cresco. Burial was in Oak Lawn Cemetery in Cresco.
Donald Richard Davis was born Aug. 2, 1942. He was the son of Raymond and Sofie (Juvik) Davis of McGregor. He was baptized and confirmed at Suede Ridge Lutheran Church of Rural McGregor. He graduated from McGregor High School. He attended Luther College in Decorah, majoring in music. His first teaching job was in Rockwell, where he taught for five years. He then moved to Cresco in 1968, where he evolved their music program, being the founder of the annual Madrigal dinner. Through the years, he also attained a master's degree in music from the University of Northern Iowa. He was joined in marriage with Susan Gronbach July 6, 1968. Through this union they were blessed with four children: Tanya, Dawn, Aaron and Min. He started his insurance career with Vagts Insurance and partnered with Normie Ferrie, establishing Davis Insurance Agency in 1983 and finishing his career with CIA Insurance in 2011.
When coming to Cresco he joined Immanuel Lutheran Church, becoming the choir director and continued directing until his death. He was very active in all aspects of the church. He served on the church council, arranged meals on wheels, enjoyed bible study, attended the morning men's breakfast and delivered food bank shares for the needy for many years. In 1990, Don became interested in the Pine Ridge Reservation, followed by annual trips, once or twice a year. Don's concern and compassion for the people living in poverty is what kept him returning year after year. He served the community as president of the Chamber of Commerce and was an active member of the Chamber for many years. Don served on the Howard County Hospital board for 20 years. He was a member of Kiwanis for over 30 years, serving as various officers, including president and the treasurer for 25 years. He was a hunter safety instructor for 35 years, working with the youth of the community, receiving the Governors Volunteer Award in 2006. He organized and directed the musical group "Elm Street Singers" for 20 years and was very active in community theatre, enjoying the interaction of all the people involved. In 2000 he was joined in marriage with Anna Mae Bergan. With this union his family was extended to include David, Chris, Michelle, Michael, Renae and Melinda and their children. Don enjoyed many hobbies including golf, bowling, fishing, canoeing, hunting and woodworking. He especially liked watching any member of his family playing sports. He was his sons' biggest baseball fan. He and Mae spent many days enjoying their time camping in Kendalville with family and friends. He treasured his time with family the most. He was so proud of his home building project with his son, Aaron. Don came to almost every program that his grandchildren were in, especially if it included singing. Don has touched so many lives in his wonderful volunteer work over the years that there are too many to mention. He has left this world a better place because he was in it. We will miss him so very much.
Don is survived by his wife, Anna Mae Bergan Davis; his children: Tanya (Craig) Fencl of Cresco, Aaron (Amanda) Davis of Rochester, Minn., Min (May Rianto) Davis of Grimes and Jeff and Alyce Schaller (adopted parents of Autumn and Andrew) of Decorah; his stepchildren: David (Elaine) Bergan of Ridgeway, Chris (Cary) Nason of Marshalltown, Michelle (Darryl) Humpal of Ridgeway, Michael (Monica) Bergan of Timberville, Va., Renae (Jeff) Beneke of Cedar Falls, and Melinda (Troy) Murphy of Cresco; his mother, Sofie Davis, of McGregor; his siblings: Dorothy (Bill) Peterson of McGregor, Paul (Chris) Davis of Los Angeles, Calif., Russ (Jean) Davis of Waterloo, Carol Harrington of Cresco; his grandchildren: Ashley Fencl, Abbey Fencl, Jordan Schaller, Autumn Schaller, Andrew Schaller, Carter Davis, Avery Davis, Lillian Davis, Sophie Davis, Kaylee Rianto; his step grandchildren: Morgan and Jared Bergan, Cate and Cassie Nason, Danielle, Courtney, Hannah and Avery Humpal, Justin, Jessica and Joy Bergan, Ethan and Emily Beneke, Tyler, Cody and Mikaela Murphy. He also is survived by many nieces, nephews, cousins and extended family.
Don was preceded in death by his father, Raymond; and his daughter, Dawn.