Obituary: Lowell Davis
February 28, 1938 – September 29, 2021
Lowell K. Davis, 83, died on September 29, 2021, at a Denver hospital. He was born February 28, 1938, in Franklin County, Indiana; the son of James T. and Asaleta (Johnson) Davis. In addition to his parents, he was predeceased by two brothers. Surviving are his wife Barbara (Cox) Davis, his daughter Lisa Beth Davis and son James Scott Davis.
Lowell graduated from Short High School in Liberty, Indiana, class of 1956. Following graduation, he received a degree in Aeronautical Engineering from Purdue University in Lafayette, Indiana. With a love of all things aeronautical, Lowell joined the Air Force and became a flight instructor for fighter jets at Laughlin Air Force Base in Del Rio, Texas. Lowell rose to the rank of Captain before leaving the Air Force. He joined Braniff International Airways as a commercial pilot, obtaining the rank of Captain.
He married Barbara Cox while in the Air Force, living in Del Rio, Texas and then moving to Dallas after joining Braniff. In 1976 they discovered Grand County, Colorado while visiting friends. There they fell in love with the mountains, the beauty and the outdoors. Quickly deciding that Grand County was where they wanted to live, they left Dallas and built a home in the Highlands. In the wake of industry-wide restructuring, Braniff went bankrupt ending Lowell’s career as a pilot. Wanting to stay in Grand County and in the home they built, Lowell began working for the Manifest/Sky-Hi News newspapers as well as other jobs.
Lowell loved fly fishing and making bamboo fly rods. He especially loved the community and camaraderie he shared with other rod makers, which he discovered after taking a cross-country trip to the Southern Rod Makers gathering in Arkansas. Wanting to nurture this community in Colorado, Lowell founded the Colorado Rod Makers gathering; which meets every summer to celebrate the art and craft of building fly rods out of bamboo. During the last year, when these groups could not gather and deeply missing the community, Lowell organized the Virtual Rod Makers Gathering (VRG), an online rod making group. VRG became a lifeline to people all over the world, with members from the US to Italy, England, Finland, Africa and beyond.
Facts, timelines, events do not do justice to a man’s life. They are milestones along the way. It’s the unremarkable moments in-between the milestones that truly define a man. Kindness, virtue, decency. These are the things that were the essence of Lowell.
In lieu of a traditional memorial service, a private memorial will be held at a later date.
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