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Morningside-Skyline column for Jan. 31

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Mary McHale

Published on: Wednesday, January 30, 2013

By Mary McHale

Jean Davis, related to a lot of Morningsiders, dies at 92

Elinor Jean Davis, a longtime Morningsider and life member of the Morningside Volunteer Fire Department Auxiliary, died Jan. 13. She was 92.

Jean, as we all knew her, was born in Washington, Ind., Sept. 23, 1920, the oldest and only girl of five children. As a child, she lived in many parts of the United States, and she used to tell of going to more than 14 schools before graduating in 1939 from Anacostia High School.

She went to work for the phone company as a switchboard operator in the long distance office and remembered how the switchboard lit up on Dec. 7, 1941.

She married her first husband, 2nd Lt. John Robert “Jack” Dyer, in 1944, and on Dec. 15, 1944, Carolyn Jean was born. Jack died 11 days after her birth, when his P-47 was shot down over Luxembourg — he never knew he had a baby daughter. Sixty years later, in 2004, the Army contacted Jean with the news that Jack’s body had been unearthed and identified. He is now buried at Cheltenham.

After the war, she met Robert “Bossy” Davis and they were married Feb. 9, 1947. On Nov. 15, their son Robert Jr. “Bobby” was born. They lived in Fairfax Village until 1959, when they moved to 7 Forest Drive in Morningside.

Jean was a member of the St. Leonard Co. 7 Alarmers and a life member and a bowler with the Ladies Auxiliary of the Morningside VFD. She coached girls’ softball and sang with the Sweet Adelines.

In 1994, they moved to Kent Island, and, in 2002, Bossy died at 82. Jean moved to Chesapeake Ranch Club, stayed with Peggy Richardson, and then lived with her daughter Carolyn in Clinton. Carolyn died in 2011. Her final move was to Church Hill, Md.

Survivors include Jean’s son Robert and wife Suzanne; grandchildren, Denise Williams (of Morningside), David Williams and wife Lori (both of Morningside), and Matthew Davis; great-grandchildren Jessica and Autumn; great-great-grandchildren Tara, Brayden, Kirra and Natlee; and brother Jay Hull. On Jan. 30 she was buried with Bossy at Cheltenham.


First, an apology to Robin Murphy, formerly of Morningside: I got bad information and reported that she would be getting married on New Year’s Eve. She wasn’t and will not be. Sorry, Robin.

Billy Krug, formerly of Skyline, is spearheading a 40th anniversary celebration for McNamara’s 1973 Football Championship Team. For information, contact him at

Coming up

Starting in February, there will be intermediate and beginning T’ai Chi classes most Wednesday evenings at Davies Memorial Unitarian Universalist Church, 7400 Temple Hills Road in Camp Springs. For information, contact Susan Goekler at or call 330-414-7867.

Darnall’s Chance house Museum invites you to a Highland Tea at 2 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 23. Come and enjoy the tastes and sounds of Scotland. Reservations and payment ($20) are due in advance. Call 301-952-8010 for more information.

Changing landscape

Postage went up on Jan. 27. It now costs 46 cents for a one-ounce letter and 33 cents for postcards. The second ounce for letters is still 20 cents. 

Value Place, a four-story extended-stay hotel featuring 121 furnished “guest studios,” with kitchen, has opened in Camp Springs next to the Social Security offices at Branch Avenue and Allentown Road. Cost for a week’s stay begins at $299.99. For information, call 301-423-4200. 

A McDonald’s at Route 4 and Chavez Lane in Forestville has been approved for demolition to be replaced with a 4,326-square-foot building.

A fire in a one-story strip mall at 3204 Branch Avenue, in Hillcrest Heights, on Dec. 22 caused about $100,000 damage and is under investigation.

May she rest in peace

Joan Vivian Miller, 78, co-owner of Miller Farms in Clinton, died Jan. 21 at her home in Clinton. She was born in Washington, the daughter of Bennie E. Garrett and Genevia Dennison. She graduated from Suitland High School, and, on Nov. 2, 1951, married Henry Philip Miller. She worked as a secretary at Andrews before becoming a stay-at-home mom to her six children.

Survivors include sons Henry Philip Jr. and Ronald Miller; daughters Cherie Barry, Betty Fugate and Lynn Dunston; sisters Carol Lee Melvin and Suzanne Oliver; 16 grandchildren and six great-grandchildren. Mass of Christian Burial was at St. Mary’s Piscataway with burial at Resurrection Cemetery.


Happy birthday to Skyline President Stanley Holmes, Feb. 2; Ashley Lee, Feb. 3; Adam Cook, Feb. 5; Diane McCrone, Feb. 6; Theo Carter, Rita Beall and J.B. Thomas, Feb. 7; Jesse Ritter and my great-granddaughter Molly McHale, Feb. 8; Connie Waby and Mary (Stakem) Crane, Feb. 9.

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