David William Davis (1943-2017)
David was born February 21, 1943, in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. He was one of four boys born to the late James W. and Vera H. Davis, who were originally from Bartlesville, Oklahoma. David attended Dewey Elementary School and graduated in 1960 from College High School, where he met and later married Carol Raney. David received his Bachelor of Architecture degree in 1965 from Oklahoma State University. In 1967, David earned his master’s degree in architecture from the University of Illinois after extensive research and study in Europe at the University of Rome, the American Academy of Rome, and the R.I.B.A. facilities in London. After earning his master’s degree, David began working as an architect in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. He worked on architecture projects that included Three Rivers Stadium, the Surgical Suite of Allegheny General Hospital, and the Patient Wing of Braddock General Hospital. David and Carol relocated to Mount Vernon, Illinois, where they welcomed their first child, Michelle. In 1971, he moved to St. Louis, where he opened his own architecture firm in the Central West End. David later relocated to Clayton, Missouri, with his second wife, Kathryn Kahn, and their beloved two young children, Paul and Anne.
During his career, David designed an 81-unit multi-family ski resort in Steamboat, Colorado; a multi-family resort in the U.S. Virgin Islands; and numerous historical restorations and family residences throughout the St. Louis region. David was awarded two prestigious AIA awards for design excellence: one for a condominium overlooking Shaw Park in Clayton with Mario Corea Aiello and the other for the unbuilt renovation of the Sheldon Concert Hall with Lorens Holm. Honors also included first runner-up in the Paris Prize and LeBrun Design Competitions. David authored the 1984 residential design standards for the largest historical district in Missouri and was published in ARCH-ITECT Magazine, Better Homes and Gardens, Architectural Record, and the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. In 2008, David was the Honorable Grand Marshall of the Oklahoma State University Homecoming Parade. He took great delight in having served as the OSU mascot, Pistol Pete, while he was in college.
David’s clients and friends will remember him for his professional integrity and dedication; his intelligence, enthusiasm, and can-do attitude for any project; and his generous and social spirit. He was always positive and ready for a good laugh. He was an amazing listener and had a great memory. His family will miss his warmth and passion for history, skiing, and family genealogy. They already miss his love for them and his incredibly charismatic involvement in their lives. His grandchildren will miss his apple pancakes and drawing lessons. David’s role of storyteller for the family will be appreciated and shared for many generations to come.
David is survived by his daughter, Michelle Davis Sanders (Dan), of Corpus Christi, Texas; his son, Paul Benjamin Davis, of London, England; his daughter, Anne Copeland Davis, of St. Louis; three grandchildren, Annabelle, Wynn, and Gantt; one presently expected but as yet unnamed grandchild this month; and two brothers, Martin Clay Davis (Becky) and James Douglas Davis (Laura), both of Corpus Christi, Texas. He is preceded in death by his oldest brother, Benjamin Neil Davis, of Hartford, Arkansas.
David’s life will be celebrated at a Memorial Service on Saturday, May 6, 2017, at 3 p.m., at Ambruster Chapel, 6633 Clayton Road in Clayton, Missouri. Interment will be at a date to be determined, near his parents in Bartlesville, Oklahoma.
In lieu of flowers, kindly direct donations to either the David Davis Scholarship Fund at OSU’s School of Architecture or the Barnes-Jewish Hospital Foundation in memory of David William Davis.