Leo Davis

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PAYNE -- Leo Freeman Davis, 97, Payne, died Sunday, January 27, 2013, at the Country Inn Enhanced Living Center, Paulding.

He was born December 6, 1915, in Payne, Ohio, the son of James and Pearl (Merica) Davis. On January 16, 1938, he married Caroline E. Schaefer, who preceded him in death on May 10, 2008. Leo was a lifelong resident of Payne and a member of the Payne Church of Christ. He was a U.S. Army veteran serving during World War II. He ran an auto repair business with his father until 1956, when he was appointed postmaster of Payne, where he served until his retirement. Leo made many contributions in public service such as serving on the Paulding County Hospital Board, but his proudest contribution was as a founding board member and serving for seven years as president of the John Paulding Historical Society. He was also a longtime member of the American Legion Post 297 and the Payne Grange.

Leo is survived by two sons, James Davis of Payne and Roger A. (Patty) Davis, Canton, Ga.; two daughters, Barbara French of Decatur, Ill., and Phyllis Davis, Madison, Wis.; two sisters, Ruth Knoblaugh of Woodburn, Ind., and Esther Fisher, Scott, Ohio; five grandchildren, Christine Neisslie, Ralph French, Brian Davis, Jason Davis and Mara Barker; and seven great-grandchildren, Ryan and Jeff Neisslie, Clay and Emily Davis, Madison French, and Pierce and Mila Davis.

He was preceded in death by his parents; brother, Dean; sisters, Eloise Webb, Mildred Noneman and Lela Davis; granddaughter, Lydia Davis; and son-in-law, Frank French.

Funeral services will be conducted at 10:30 a.m. Friday, February 1, at Payne Church of Christ with Pastor Richard Phelan officiating. Burial will follow in Lehman Cemetery, Payne. Visitation will be from 3-7 p.m. Thursday, January 31, at Den Herder Funeral Home, Paulding, and one hour prior to services on Friday at the church.

Donations may be made to John Paulding Historical Society, 600 Fairground Drive, Paulding, Ohio 45879; or Payne Church of Christ, 220 West Merrin St., Payne, Ohio 45880. Online condolences may be sent to www.denherderfh.com.

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