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Denny Davis

Wednesday, January 3, 2007

Humphrey Denny Davis, 79, of Fayette, Mo., died Saturday, Dec. 30, 2006, at Cooper County Memorial Hospital in Boonville, Mo.

Davis was a reporter at the Southeast Missourian from 1951 to 1954.

He was born May 8, 1927, in Fayette, son of Lionel Winchester and Sarah Elizabeth Denny Davis. He and Barbara Ellen Hartsgrove were married June 6, 1954.

Davis was a 1945 graduate of Fayette High School, attended Central Methodist University, and received a bachelor's degree from the University of Missouri-Columbia School of Journalism in 1949.

He served in the U.S. Navy from 1945 to 1946 and from 1950 to 1951.

Davis went to work for UPI in Oklahoma City, Okla., in 1954. He worked in Peru, Brazil and Mexico for UPI from 1956 to 1975, before becoming a regional executive with the news service in Charlotte, N.C., from 1975 to 1978.

He returned to Fayette in 1978 and operated a printing business until 1984 when he bought the Fayette Advertiser and the Democrat-Leader.

After retiring in 2000, he continued to worked several hours a week for both papers until May 2005. He was inducted into the Missouri Press Association Hall of Fame in 2005.

Davis was a senior warden at St. Mary's Episcopal Church 10 years and was a licensed lay reader from 1983 until his death.

He was a founder of Fayette Area Heritage Association, and was a member 10 years of the U.S. secretary of the interior's advisory council on the Santa Fe Trail.

Survivors include his wife, and a sister, Estelle Coombe of Lakewood, Colo.

He was preceded in death by a son.

Davis willed his body to the University of Missouri School of Medicine.

A private memorial service will be held at St. Mary's Episcopal Church at a later date.

Friemonth-Freese Funeral Service in Fayette is in charge of arrangements.