FREDERICKTOWN — Ray and Pat Davis are honored to be the 2018 Tomato Show parade marshals.
Ray was born in a house at Fourth and Mulberry streets in Fredericktown. He was delivered by Dr. Ackerman, who put him into the snow when Ray wouldn’t take his first breath. Pat moved to Fredericktown from Gambier at age 3. Both attended Fredericktown schools and graduated from Fredericktown High School.
After attending Capital University, Ray started working for The Firestone Co. Then he and Darel Hathaway talked to Harold Harstine while visiting the Knox County Fair and Harold offered Ray the office manager/controller position at Harstine Implement. Harstine Implement closed when Harold was killed in a car accident; by then Ray had worked there for 23 years. Ray went to work for Cooper Industries until his department moved to Texas. He then worked for the local school as grounds keeper, utility custodian and substitute bus driver. He took great pride in making sure the football field and lawns looked nice. Ray was also the Fredericktown Village treasurer for 10 years. Since retiring, he works part-time for the Fredericktown Recreation District.
Pat worked locally for Dr. Jack Renicker. She also worked as activities director at Hillcrest Nursing Home. She served as administrator of the Fredericktown Christian Pre-School for many years. She also worked as a chiropractic assistant and x-ray technician at Walker Chiropractic.
Pat and Ray have been married 57 years and were one of the first couples to be married in the Fredericktown Methodist Church after it moved to Columbus Road. They are proud of their three children: Rae Jean (Brian) Zollars, Mandy Halterman, and Jim (Cynthia) Davis; as well as their eight grandchildren and nine great-grandchildren. Their children and grandchildren all attended Fredericktown Schools. The Davis’ major activity is their family.
They have also been very active in the community. Ray’s activities have included president and treasurer of the Lions Club, president of the Athletic Boosters, president of The United Methodist Men, member of the Fredericktown Recreation Board, president of the Scholarship Board of the Fredericktown Alumni Association, treasurer of The Freddie Pride Committee, a member of Wayne Grange and its dart ball team, Little League coach, youth football coach and treasurer and board member of Willie Davis Youth Football. Ray volunteered as a Sunday school teacher and Treasurer of the Field House Building Committee. Ray has been on several Fredericktown softball and bowling teams. He also helped move Gus the Moose home.
Pat’s past activities include Tots to Teens Mother’s Club, Sunday School teacher and Bible School Director. She was a 10 year 4-H advisor, and a member of the Fredericktown School Advisory Board. Pat enjoyed being a member of bowling teams, as well as being a member of Wayne Grange and its dart ball team.
Pat and Ray are currently volunteers for the Athletic Boosters, Willie Davis Youth Football, Senior Activity Center and are active in the Fredericktown United Methodist Church. Both attend most of the school activities. Pat belongs to euchre and bridge clubs, the West Side Club and Red Hatters. She has also helped deliver Christmas trees to Knox County nursing home patients with Christmas at Heart. Pat volunteers at the annual Fredericktown Quilters’ Market.
They have been active in the Tomato Show over the years. They have helped and taken part in over 25 floats, co-chaired the Fredericktown Athletic Booster’s food trailer (home of the famous Freddie Burger), worked in church concessions, the Willie Davis Youth Football Booth and the Tots to Teens Lemonade booth. They’ve taken part in the pedal tractor pull, exhibited and won the tomato “anything goes” category, participated in both photography and flower exhibits. They have also won in the Lip Sync Contest. They continue to volunteer in the Tomato Show Hospitality Booth. Thanks to their daughter, we now know that Pat was the anonymous winning artist of the 2017 Tomato Show premium book cover, as well as the 2017 T-shirt design contest.
The 2018 Tomato Show with the theme, “Growing Toward the Future,” will take place Sept. 5-8. The parade begins at 12:30 p.m.