UPDATE: Celebration of Life set for Saturday June 2 – Jack Knight Hall 11 – 2. Potluck.
At the family’s request, donations can be made to , Calaveras Big Trees Association, Friends of Columbia State Historic Park or the American Cancer Society.
******Friends and co-workers at Calaveras Big Trees State Park and Columbia were staggered by news of the death of Ranger Jeff Davis..
Davis, for many of us, was the perfect embodiment of what a park ranger should be. He even looked the part. Well over six feet tall, when he knelt down to share some exciting item with a child visiting the park he seemed to fold down into a friendly angular package, just the right height to charm a small child.
During his decades at Calaveras Big Trees, his primary role was as a law enforcement ranger, but he always acted like a host and treated park visitors like honored guests.
When he relocated to Columbia State Historical Park, he was the tall ranger who stood out in a crowd, usually surrounded by school children, charming them with stories. He was knowledgeable, and loved nothing better than a chance to be outdoors, meeting the public and sharing information that enhanced their experience. He was known for bringing a smile to every person, and a willingness to take on any job needed.
When it snowed at Calaveras, he got out a shovel and cleared the walkway. It probably wasn’t his job, but he did it anyway. When a park visitor had a medical emergency on the hiking trail, he responded with a calming demeanor. He always took time for children and adults alike, gently enforced the rules when needed, and made the park visit a better experience. He was the ranger who was happy to take part in Irish Days in Murphys, or Fourth of July parades in Arnold.
Davis died at his Arnold home after a long battle with brain cancer, with his wife and teenaged children nearby. Even in his illness, he had kept his humor and optimism, reporting to friends his experience including the challenges and the small successes.
Jeff Davis, Park Ranger, rest in peace.
Tribute by Sanders Lamont.