Mr. Ronnie Harold Davis, age 83, of Newport, Arkansas was born August 8, 1933 to Hazel (Burgess) Davis and Austin Davis. When his mother died before he was three years old, he went to live with his aunt and uncle, Audine (Burgess) Smith and Leba Smith, who raised him from that day to adulthood as his life-long Mother and Dad.
After graduating from Tuckerman High School in 1952, Ronnie enlisted in the United States Navy serving in Korea from 1952 until 1956, receiving various medals. Following his stint in the Navy, he moved to California, where he managed the then famous Aladin movie theater. Because of his young son’s health, he moved back to Arkansas and accepted the position of Personnel Manager for Brown-Jordan/American Lantern. Following the divestiture of Brown Jordan/American Lantern, he became a Supervisor of the Paint and Buffing Depts. of American Lantern from which he retired after 25 years with the company.
Following retirement, he went back into the business world by opening J and R’s Restaurant which later became AJQ’s Cookout. After building a successful business there, he was offered the opportunity to take over Kelley’s Restaurant, which he owned until his retirement in 2003.
Throughout his careers, Ronnie made many friends and had a far reaching impact on so many. He had a passion for helping others. He had many hobbies, he played softball when he was younger and he enjoyed bowling, golfing and fishing.
He was preceded in death by his life-long parents and his birth parents. He is survived by his wife of 49 years, Bettye H. Davis; two sons, Ronnie Harold Davis, Jr. (Debbie) of Apple Valley, CA and Jeremy H. Davis of Newport, AR. One daughter, Audra Jennings (Jerry) of Winter Haven, FL; one step son, Fred Fitzpatrick of Rogers, AR; two brothers, Bob Smith (Mary Jo) and Lanny Smith of Newport, AR; three grandchildren, Alyce (Aly) Bennett (Christopher) of Canton, GA, Jacob Jennings, of Canton, GA, Jeremy H. Davis, Jr. (Quake) of Newport, AR; 4 great grandchildren, Ava Bennett, Isaiah Bennett, of Canton, GA, Cassity Goodwin, and Ashlyn Goodwin of Apple Valley, CA. In addition, he leaves behind 3 beloved dogs that love him dearly; Maxim, Madison, and Jethro.
Those honored to serve as pallbearers are, Dee Stuart, Ronnie Anderson, Mark Howard, Gene Floyd, Charles Ed Dukes, and Rita Peterson.
Friends may visit at the funeral home Monday 6:00-8:00 p.m. Funeral services will be 10:00 a.m. Tuesday at Jackson’s Newport Funeral Home Chapel. Interment will follow in Memory Garden Cemetery.
Those who wish to donate, please do so to the Jackson County Humane Society, Newport, AR.