Jewell Fae Dunaway Davis was born on March 9, 1920, near Hebron in Douglas County, Missouri, to Clarence Dunaway and Ada (Thompson) Dunaway, their first child. Since she was the oldest of their five children, she was a protector and anchor in this loving, close-knit family. Fae, as she was known to her family and friends, passed from this life to her heavenly home on February 22, 2011 at the age of 90 years, 11 months and 13 days. She remained mentally alert to the last breath.
She was preceded in death by her beloved husband, George E. “Rat” Davis, whom she married on January 18, 1942; her parents; a daughter, Carla Davis Collins; and her only brother, Sidney Dunaway.
Fae is survived by her daughter, Bonnie Lincoln and husband Al; her six grandchildren, Tim Davis, Tammy Davis Carman, Tara Davis, Travis Davis, Chris Collins and Rene Collins; ten great-grandchildren; three sisters and one sister-in-law, Ruby and Wayne Tetrick of Willow Springs, Missouri, Wilma and Jim Anderson of Ulysses, Kansas, Virginia and Les Mace of Springfield, Missouri, and Betty Dunaway of Willow Springs; as well as two nieces and three nephews, several cousins, extended family and many friends.
Fae accepted Jesus as her Savior when she was 13 years old and was baptized into Mt. Ararat Missionary Baptist Church, always living a committed Christian life and setting an example for her siblings.
She attended Mt. Ararat rural school in Douglas County during her grade school years. Because there was no school bus route to that area until later, she had to delay high school but never gave up on the dream. She graduated from Cabool High School with honors in 1941, having served as junior class president and as student body president her senior year. She attended classes at Southwest Missouri State College in Springfield during the summer following graduation, and began to teach school that fall, teaching in several rural schools after marriage while her husband was on overseas duty for four years during World War II. When he returned home in 1945, they purchased a farm and spent many happy years together there.
When Fae was five years old, she contracted a dreaded disease, cholera infantum, with her parents being advised by a doctor that she wouldn’t survive. Although she lost her hair and teeth and had to learn to walk again, she did survive and it certainly did not impair her mental capacity. She was always at the top of her class, was an avid reader, and could still win at a game of Scrabble until she became ill.
Her family has many treasured memories of time spent with her, Thanksgiving dinners on the farm with tractor-wagon rides in the afternoon, listening as she told stories, and filling them in on their family history.
Funeral services were held on Saturday, February 26, 2011, at 10:00 a.m. in Pleasant Home Free Will Baptist Church with Rev. Jerry Pinkerton and Rev. Gene Crewse officiating. Kevin Denis sang “Sweet Beulah Land” and “The Way of the Cross Leads Home.” Pallbearers were Tim Davis, Travis Davis, Mike Anderson, Gary Tetrick, Steve Mace, and Dalton Carman. Honorary pallbearers were Chris Collins, Jimmy Carman and Cory Tate. Burial was in Vanzant Cemetery under the direction of Craig-Hurtt Funeral Home, Mtn. Grove, Missouri.
Online condolences may be made at www.craighurttfuneralhome.com.