Eli Davis: 1929 – 2018 “A Man for All Seasons”


Southwest / Texas 29 Views


By Dr. J. Ester Davis

In 1988, the theme for the Dunbar Social Club Debutantes was “Magnificent Reflections”, the music entertainment was performed by the famed East Texas All Stars from Tyler, Texas, and

President Eli Davis bought greetings of welcome to the Sixty-Sixth Annual Dunbar Social Club Debutante Cotillion Ball. “It is within this décor that the Dunbar men present the 1988 Debutantes. These lovely young ladies, who make their debut to society, will have moments to cherish for years to come. . .”

President of the Dunbar Social Club is a mere tidbit of the leadership roles Eli Davis played while here on earth. Married for 66 years to his “lovely college sweetheart”, he raised and educated four of his own children, one niece and a bounty of young minds as a principal, a youth director, an image of examples.

He was ordained as a Deacon in 1970 and wore this Christian banner loudly.

Eli Davis, never forgot where he came from. He spoke often of his church, Greater New Zion Baptist Church, sending him to college on twenty-five (25) cents cake bake sales. He would call the ladies by name and in every session of this story he would always say ‘thank you again’ for investing in me.

A “man for all seasons” retells the historic legacy surrounding Eli Davis. A “man for all seasons” refers firstly to fortitude, purpose and character that a person possesses naturally. It truly means to be that person and no matter the circumstances or time, he will rise to the challenge of being the man God has created in him.

Eli Davis used all the gifts in his DNA toolbox. From military to street ministry. From school house to the jail house. From driving the church bus to driving a point to congress. From national conventions to congressional nominations. From world traveler to Dallas Big Brothers. He was a community hero.

I think as we prepare to celebrate his life, Eli Davis would be proud of us “rehashing” his life’s actions and most proud of how he spent his ‘dash’. Rest in peace Deacon Davis. Thanks for the memories and the examples.

“The true meaning of life is to plant trees under whose shade you do not expect to sit”. – Nelson Henderson

Wake:  Greater New Zion Baptist Church
Rev. Joe S. Patterson, Presiding
Celebration of Life Wake Service, Friday, August 17, 2018 @7:00PM

Funeral:  Greater New Zion Baptist Church
Rev. Joe S. Patterson, Presiding

Homegoing Celebration Services, Saturday, August 18, 2018 @11:00AM

Rest:  DFW Cemetery
Tuesday, August 21, 2018 – Time TBA

LOOKING . . . for presidents of all organizational Presidents as we welcome to Dallas’ African American Museum “Slavery at Monticello Exhibit: Thomas Jefferson & Sally Hemings, September 20, 2018, W Luncheon and Grand Opening, September 22, 2018.

www.esterday.com or 214.376.9000 214.763.6788