Barbara B. Davis
Community volunteer, devoted mother of 7, gardener, creative hobbyist
Barbara Buschmeyer Davis, affectionately known to many as “Babs” or “Barb,” died on May 15, 2012 in Claremont. A Pilgrim Place resident, Ms. Davis was 83.
Born on November 24, 1928 in Boston, Massachusetts to Frederick S. and Myrna (Ebert) Buschmeyer, she grew up in Durham, New Hampshire and Washington, DC. After graduating in 1946 from Central High School in DC, Ms. Davis attended Wellesley College where she earned her bachelor’s degree in biblical history in 1950.
On December 29, 1951, she married William Edward Funcke in Montclair, New Jersey. They lived in Iowa City, Iowa and Grand Rapids, Michigan before moving to Beaver Dam, Wisconsin in 1959.
The mother of 7 children, Ms. Davis was a very active parent. She also participated in book clubs, belonged to various groups at Trinity Church United Methodist, served on the YMCA board of directors in Beaver Dam and, in the late 1970s, coached the YMCA swim team. In April 1973, she was elected to the Beaver Dam school board and eventually served as president. She enjoyed keeping a large vegetable garden and was known for providing free haircuts for her sons and their friends, her chili suppers, playing the piano and making artful fabric banners for church.
In 1981, after a divorce, Ms. Davis moved to Winchester, Massachusetts. There, she married Walter Bond Davis, a minister at the First Congregational Church in Winchester, on September 10, 1982. She embraced 2 stepchildren, continued her church involvement and took up quilting and knitting.
She and Mr. Davis moved to Attleboro, Massachusetts for several years before retiring to Pilgrim Place where Barbara’s mother, Myrna Buschmeyer, resided until her death in 2000. Ms. Davis enjoyed Pilgrim Place’s lively community, especially her close friends and caring staff members. She enthusiastically learned the art of pottery there from her mentor, Hal.
Besides her beloved family and friends, creative pursuits and community involvement, Ms. Davis relished being at her special summer place among the pines on Lake Winnipesaukee in New Hampshire, a place of respite that she visited almost every summer since the late-1940s.
Ms. Davis is survived by her husband, Walter Davis of Claremont; her children, stepchildren and their spouses, William “Ward” and Christy Funcke of Lincoln, Nebraska, Peter Funcke of Beaver Dam, Wisconsin, Eric Funcke and Ann Simmons of Evanston, Illinois, Craig Funcke of San Mateo, Jean Funcke and Sam Pocernich of Baraboo, Wisconsin, Neil and Joan Funcke of Manchester, New Hampshire, Martha Davis of Los Angeles and Tom and Kat Davis of Salina, Kansas; her 12 grandchildren and their spouses: Joshua and Danielle Funcke, Andrea and Robert Parks, Katie and Dustin Brock, Melissa and Robbie Blaske, Benjamin Funcke and his fiancée Amanda Bell, Steven, Brian and Elle Funcke, Kate Eisenpresser-Davis and Kara, Calvin and Summer Davis; her 7 great-grandchildren, Morgan and Ava Funcke, Lily, Wyatt and Robert Parks and Savannah and Lea Brock; and several in-laws, cousins, nieces and nephews.
She was preceded in death by a son, Kent Andrew Funcke; her brother, Frederick “Bud” Buschmeyer, Jr.; and her sister, Myrna Marshall.
A memorial celebration was held yesterday, June 1, 2012 at Decker Hall in Pilgrim Place.
Wishing to repeat the sentiments of Gordon Sorensen, an important pastor in her life, in lieu of flowers or memorial gifts, Ms. Davis suggested paying visits to housebound persons or persons with special needs, sending thank you letters for intangible gifts perhaps received some years ago, mailing letters of justice and peace issues or forming new connections that will lead to a better world for future generations.