Merle's Story

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Merle Leon Davis, 72, of Danville, passed away peacefully Sunday, March 5, 2017 at 5:50 a.m. in his home with family by his side.
He was born in Danville on Dec. 8, 1944 to Leo Merle and Helen (Holaves) Davis.
He married Linda Basinger on March 2, 1968. They just celebrated their 49th wedding anniversary.
Merle is survived by his wife, Linda; son, Troy (Cindy) Zumwalt of Danville; daughter, Shawn (Jeff) Holst of Danville; grandsons, Brian Holst of Danville, Brandon Holst of Decatur, Ill.; step-grandson, Chuck Hagan of Danville; sister, Deena Gardner of Baxter, Minn.; brother, Johnny Davis of Danville; sister-in-law, Wilda Pierce and Sheila Basinger both of Danville; and several nieces and nephews.
He was preceded in death by his parents; step-dad; grandparents; sister-in-law, Marsha Davis; and brother-in-law, Robert Gardner and Tom Pierce.
Merle attended Wait, Glindmeier, and Lynch Grade School and Bismarck High School. He served in Vietnam from August 1966 to July 1967 with Battery B, 3d Battalion 82nd Artillery 196th Light Infantry Brigade, known as the Burning Rope. He always said that he served with a great bunch of guys, some came home, some didn't.
He started in the trucking business working for his step-dad, Floyd Hires at Hires Trucking at the age of 17. He worked there until it closed. He then went to work for Lovelace Trucking. He retired from Holland Trucking in 1999 with 35 years in the Teamsters Local 26. He had many great friends through the years.
He enjoyed working in his barn on old trucks and tractors. He loved wood working and using his tools. He could always be found outside working on his property. Most of all, he loved his family and helping them.
Per Merle's wishes his funeral services will be for his private family only. Burial will be at Springhill Cemetery in Danville. In lieu of flowers memorials can be made in his name to Disabled Veterans or St. Jude's children's Hospital. Sunset Funeral Home and Cremation Center in Danville are in charge of arrangements.
Please join Merle's family in sharing memories, photos and videos on his Tribute Wall at www.sunsetfuneralhome.com.
Published on March 6, 2017
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