John Davis was born Feb. 11, 1938, in Boise, Idaho, to John and Estelle Davis. His family at the time lived in Glenns Ferry, Idaho. His mother taught school and his father was a doctor. He has one older sister, Kathryn Davis MaHaffey. He passed away Dec. 28, 2018.
John Davis is a character to be remembered for his razor-sharp wit, an uncanny sense of humor and always the consummate gentleman. Being kind and considerate to everyone around him, he was the perfect host. Except for the last several years when Parkinson’s disease began to slow him down, he lived his 80 years at full throttle! At social gatherings, you would find him in the middle of the action, always organizing the next get-together before they parted.
John’s father passed away many years before his mother. Estelle lived next door to John in the family cabin, and was a big part of his life. All of John’s friends knew her well and loved her company. She was definitely an entertaining personality just like her son! Growing up, John learned to hunt and fish with his father, uncle and cousins. This established a strong foundation for his lifelong love of the great outdoors. His family moved to Burley when he was a young boy and he graduated from Burley High School in 1956. He attended the U of I and was extremely proud to be a member of the Phi Gamma Delta (Fiji) fraternity. He recently had been in touch with some of his classmates who were having a reunion in Moscow. He was disappointed he couldn’t travel to attend but he enjoyed catching up with some by phone.
After graduating from college, he headed to San Francisco, living in Sausalito for several years. It was here he took up the game of tennis, and of course being “Mr. Congeniality” he quickly made friends, one of which was the TV personality Merv Griffin. He had plenty of stories to tell about his California days. During this period, he began working as a sales rep for several different fabric companies. He traveled the Pacific Northwest region and was often in Idaho. John began to reminisce about his childhood and the many excursions he took with his parents and sister, Kathy, to Ketchum. They had a cabin situated on a beautiful spot on the Wood River in west Ketchum. These wonderful memories eventually spurred him to move back to Idaho in 1975 and he built a home next door to the family cabin.
John was an avid fly fisherman, with skill that outmatched many! Some of his favorite spots were Henry’s Lake in Island Park and Silver Creek in the Wood River Valley. With his friend Tom Sabo of Bozeman, he was often in a drift boat on the Madison River. There were numerous trips steelhead fishing on the Clearwater River with his stepsons, Mark Hon and Randy Jordan.
Pheasant hunting in the fall was a pastime that led to some quite entertaining stories. Trips to North and South Dakota with his buddy Bob Lutz were bound to offer good-hearted competition plus a ton of laughs.
All these incredibly happy memories sustained him when it became increasingly difficult for John to be active.
Another pastime he loved was hiking all the trails to the high mountain lakes in the Sawtooths. He was a terrific hiker! Friends always commented that only the mountain goats could keep up with his fast pace … teasing him about his oversized calf muscles! He often spoke of his exciting experience hiking Machu Picchu in the Andes of Peru.
If it was warm outside and the sun was shining, John was either playing golf or hiking. He earned bragging rights twice to the hole-in-one-club at Elkhorn on No. 2 and No. 11. When winter arrived and the snow began to fall, he was ready with his skis; downhill or cross country … he loved it all! Cross-country skiing you’d often see his beautiful dog, an American Eskimo named Sitka, running alongside him.
In 1992, he married Beverly Burke Hon, of Boise, and was so proud to be part of a large family. Beverly loved to travel, always ready to experience the culture of new places and in particular the cuisine! Their traveling included yearly trips to the Spring Creek Ranch in Jackson Hole where she loved to celebrate her birthday; trips to Italy and Greece; Alaskan cruise; the Greenbriar in West Virginia; and St. Thomas island to visit his sister, Kathy, and her husband, Bill Mahaffey.
Bob Lutz, John’s close friend, used to say Beverly was the best cook he’d ever known and John agreed he was a lucky guy!
It wasn’t long before Beverly and John decided they wanted another dog after Sitka, so along comes Cody, a cute little Havanese with a big personality! He was John’s constant companion!
When it became difficult for John to take Cody on walks, his neighbors, Mike and Judy Feiler, helped out. They kindly offered to stop by every day and take Cody along on their walk. John appreciated so much their friendship and caring. He spoke with them about adopting Cody if it became necessary and they didn’t hesitate to answer. For John, this was comforting to know Cody would have a wonderful home.
John is preceded in death by his wife, Beverly, and his parents, John and Estelle Davis. He is survived by his sister, Kathy Mahaffey (Bill), of Peachtree City, Ga., and St. Thomas island, and two nephews, Matthew and Michael Mahaffey. His stepchildren are Mark Hon (Claudia), Margo Hon Land (Christopher), Nancy Jordan, Randy Jordan, Dan Jordan (Heather), and Polly Jordan. He has seven grandchildren: Alex, Lauren, Spencer, Will, Matthew, Scott and Andrea.
The greatest happiness in life for John was being surrounded by family and friends and living where the splendor of the mountains, and the rushing sound of water from the Wood River, were right in his backyard. He loved watching the wildlife and the eagles soaring over the river and lastly, at the end of the day, sitting with friends by the fire, enjoying a glass of wine or two!
John: “May your spirit now soar like the eagles in all the beauty beyond!”
A celebration of life will be held in the summer of 2019. In lieu of flowers, donations to the American Parkinson Disease Association, NW Chapter, at 180 Nickerson St., Suite 108, Seattle, WA 98109, would be appreciated.