CHESHIRE – Robert D. Davis, 93, passed away on Tuesday, January 24, 2023, surrounded by his family at his home in Cheshire. He was the husband of the late Frances (Jenkins) Davis. Bob and Fran had lived together in Cheshire since 1973.
Bob was born on March 18, 1929, in Windsor, Conn. He was the son of the late William and Gertrude (Geigle) Davis and a graduate of John Fitch High School. After high school, he found work for a winter in Vermont as a lumberjack. He ultimately decided to settle closer to home and found success as a salesman for Bussman Press, Data Documents, and J.C. Business Forms. Bob served his country, with honor and pride, first in the Army Reserves, then in the 169th Regiment of the United States Army. He obtained the rank of First Sergeant during the Korean conflict. The Christian faith was very important to Bob: he taught religious classes at Faith Lutheran Church in East Hartford and was deeply involved in the Cheshire Lutheran Church for more than 50 years.
Bob had many talents, including as an exceptional woodworker. He once built a 23-foot wooden sailboat. Once he learned to sail, he gave it away and built a smaller boat, which he enjoyed for many years. With time, he turned his interest toward building fine furniture, including Shaker-style chairs and tables, elaborate handmade games and delicate trinket boxes. He also built two large post-and-beam barns, one on his Christmas tree farm in Massachusetts, and one on his son Michael’s property here in Cheshire. They remain wonderful examples of his skill and craftsmanship.
Bob and Fran loved the outdoors. They would spend hours hiking and exploring trails along the East Coast, including much of the Appalachian Trail, and visited many national parks. They traveled the country together in their no-frills camper, just the way they liked it. Bob loved the beauty of the land and worked to preserve it. He was a volunteer into his 80s, clearing trails for the forestry service. Bob was past president of the Cheshire Land Trust and worked on the Fresh Meadows land acquisition. All of Cheshire’s trails have been worked, walked, or marked by signs made by him as a true steward of our community.
Bob’s character was well known: he was a very gentle, nonjudgmental man who never raised his voice and treated everyone with kindness. He had an easy laugh and his demeanor was calming and reassuring. He was an artist, an avid reader, and a talented albeit surprising chef. He loved his family above all else, and leaves multiple generations grateful for every walk, hike, shared meal, art lesson, time, and experience with him.
Bob’s deepest passion was the love he held for his wife, Fran. Together they enjoyed many beautiful years of marriage. Bob deeply missed Fran after her passing. His family is comforted to know they are reunited in eternity.
Bob is survived by his children, Keith Davis of Wales, Massachusetts, Kevin Davis of Ohio, Lisa Davis of Florida, Michael Daley of Cheshire and Lynn Daley of Wallingford. Bob has 10 grandchildren and (at last count) 18 great-grandchildren. In addition to his parents, Bob was predeceased by his siblings Ruth, Richard, William, and Warren.
Arrangements: Funeral services for Mr. Davis will be held on Saturday, February 4, 2023, at 10:30 a.m. at Cheshire Lutheran Church, 660 West Main St., Cheshire. Friends are asked to meet directly at the church. Burial, with full military honors, will follow in Cheshire Hillside Cemetery. There are no calling hours, and the Alderson-Ford Funeral Home of Cheshire is assisting with the arrangements. Memorial contributions, in his name, can be made to the Cheshire Land Trust. For online condolences, and to share a photo or a story, please visit www.fordfh.com.