Harris Benjamin Davis Sr., age 80, of Orangeburg, departed his earthly body to be with the Lord at 11:22 p.m. Sunday, May 24, 2020, at the Regional Medical Center, Orangeburg. He died surrounded by his family, including his beloved wife of 56 years, Nancy Brown Davis.
A family graveside celebration of Mr. Davis’ life will be held Wednesday, May 27, at 11:00 a.m. in Sunnyside Cemetery, with the Rev. Ryan Tucker officiating. Due to COVID-19 precautions, there will be no visitation.
Mr. Davis was born in Charleston to the late Lonnie Farris Davis and Katherine Pridgen Davis. His family moved to Florence when he was in the fourth grade. Harris graduated from McClenaghan High School in 1957 and attended The Citadel. He enlisted in the U.S. Army, and during his three-year tenure when serving in Germany, he carried out his duties in the 4th Missile Battalion, 59th Artillery, of the 35th Artillery Brigade. One of his greatest distinctions was being honored as Soldier of the Year in 1963, after receiving both the Soldier of the Month and Soldier of the Quarter. Upon completion of his duties, he returned to Orangeburg with Nancy to start their family. After working several years with Palmetto Baking Company Inc., in 1969 Harris and Nancy started NHE Inc. (formerly N&H Enterprise, Inc.), a real estate management company. Over the years, the company has been involved in many facets of real estate development and management, but managing affordable housing for seniors, and other special needs populations, became Harris’ passion. Although his work was primarily focused in South Carolina, he spent over eight years working across the United States consulting with Elderly House and Development Corporation (EHDOC) to widen his knowledge and experience with senior housing on a national level.
Over the course of his career, he served in many leadership roles, both locally and nationally, to include president of the Orangeburg Chamber of Commerce in 1977, lieutenant governor of District 16 of Kiwanis International, and Willington Academy and Orangeburg Preparatory Schools board of directors. His most rewarding professional service was serving as one of the founding members of the Southeastern Affordable Housing Management Association (SAHMA), serving as its president from 1993-1994. He also served First Baptist Church of Orangeburg in numerous ways, to include serving as a deacon and trustee on multiple occasions. He made a contribution to all organizations that he was a part of and cultivated many lifelong friends along the way.
Although he had many professional accomplishments, Harris was most grateful for his family and was passionate about making a difference in his communities. Harris spend his entire life probing deep, theological questions. He believed that love was the greatest gift and lived his belief faithfully all his life. Harris considered his greatest accomplishment to be his 56-year marriage to Nancy — they shared a love of family, friends, travel, gardening and their church, First Baptist Church of Orangeburg. Harris never shied away from difficult conversations or challenges, in any aspect of his life. He believed, with God’s guidance, he could make the world a better place. He raised his children and grandchildren to contribute to their community and to be kind and generous. All who knew Harris have many “Harris” stories, affectionately called stories from the “Book of Davis.” He was a great storyteller and lived his 80 years with a fullness that was rare. There are too many stories to share, but one of his favorite expressions was “Every day is a great day!” He lived with a sense of gratitude that permeated all those who knew him. He was dynamic, loving and dared to expect all those he met to be better people.
Harris is survived by his wife of 56 years, Nancy Brown Davis, and his four children, Harris Benjamin Davis Jr. (Karen) of Orangeburg, Dorothy McQueen Davis (Susan) of Atlanta, Alec Taylor Brown Davis (Lisa) of Greenville, and Clifton Pridgen Davis (Deborah) of Greenville; his seven grandchildren, Annie Blair Davis, Harris Benjamin Davis III, Gavin Davis-Hutto, Diego Stegall-Martinez, William Preston Davis, John Harris Davis and Margaret Alicia Stegall-Martinez; and a sister, Dr. Lynda Faye Davis of Mount Pleasant.
In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to First Baptist Church of Orangeburg, P.O. Box 637, Orangeburg, SC 29116.
Posted in: Times and Democrat
Posted on: 2020-05-26
Link to original obituary: https://thetandd.com/news/local/obituaries/harris-benjamin-davis-sr—-orangeburg/article_3520464d-4a53-51ac-ad16-9fa05be03f5a.html