Viewpoint: Danny Davis was a true community servant
“And just as you want men to do to you, you also do to them likewise.” Luke 6:31
BY RYAN PEGARSCH
If there is anyone who lived that verse, it was Danny Davis.
Danny, who passed away earlier this week, took pride in making sure everyone felt welcome and cared for everywhere he went.
I may have only known Danny for less than a year, but in many ways it felt like I had known him my whole life. There is not one person who came in contact with Danny that their life was not touched by him. He would ask all of the right questions and was always present when you needed him. He always cared to hear about your day and your family.
Danny was a man of many talents, which he poured into teaching, coaching, driver’s education instruction, and pageants. He was a true community servant. He loved each and every community that he lived in.
Danny could be a man of few words in meetings, but you knew exactly what he was thinking. When he spoke, you needed to stop and listen to what he was saying. He had what many people have called a "quiet strength” about him. His presence alone had a huge impact. You knew he cared. I valued the daily conversation. Whether you spoke with Danny for a minute or 30 minutes, he would always end the conversation with “Stay outta trouble.” He wanted everyone that he was associated with to become the best they could be.
He loved his Miss Statesvilles or should I say, “Danny’s Girls.” We were honored to celebrate the pageant's 20th anniversary this year, and multiple former winners were in attendance at the pageant. He was on cloud nine as he talked with each of them and reminisced about their year as Miss Statesville.
Danny also had a dream to bring Miss America to Statesville and, this year, he made it happen and we brought Miss America to help celebrate our 20thAnniversary. He was so instrumental in the refranchising of Miss Statesville and giving over $100,000 in scholarships to young women in Iredell County.
The pageant would not be in existence today if it was not for Danny Davis and a few of his former students.
Danny Davis embodied the saying "Leave your community better then you found it." He will never be forgotten because he loved Statesville and everything that is associated with our city.
If I could leave everyone with something, it would be this: Take a moment today to invest in someone because you will gain so much by taking that extra second to be present in a conversation and care for someone. Then do whatever you can to make your community a better place.
Ryan Pegarsch is executive director of the Miss Statesville Pageant.