The Passing of Willie D. Davis
It is with sadness that we announce that our family patriarch, Willie D. Davis passed away in his sleep this morning after an extended illness. He was probably best known as the premier Hall of Fame defensive end and team captain for the dominating Lombardi era Green Bay Packers of the 1960s, but he was much more. He was a trailblazer in the world of business, as adept in the boardroom of the numerous Fortune 500 corporations on whose boards of directors he served as he was on the gridiron. His later passion was radio broadcasting, becoming one of the first Black Americans to own a Class A radio broadcasting license. A graduate of Grambling University, he was a proud brother of Kappa Alpha Psi fraternity. He also earned an MBA from the University of Chicago as well as numerous honorary degrees. He would undoubtedly agree that his greatest achievement was his family.
He was adored by his wife, Carol, his children Duane (Inge) and Lori, grandchildren David, Wyatt, Harley and Hayden as well as his brothers and sisters and a host of family and friends. Funeral services will be private, but a future, public celebration celebration of his incredible life is planned. The family is requesting privacy at this time.
— The Davis Family
We are deeply saddened to hear of the passing of Packers Hall of Famer Willie Davis. Our thoughts are with his friends and family.
— Triumph Books (@TriumphBooks) April 15, 2020
RIP Willie Davis. Not only a Hall of Fame player but few could light up a room like Davis. He was one of those guys that always made you feel like you were his best friend. I’ll cherish this picture with Davis and the late Dick Schaap on the night Ray Nitschke passed in 1998. pic.twitter.com/YAapp7MtyE
— Tim Ring (@timringTV) April 15, 2020
Once talked with #Bengals owner Mike Brown about Willie Davis.
He smiled and remembered his dad didn’t think Davis could cut it as an offensive lineman, so the #Browns traded him to the #Packers.
The rest, of course, was history.
“We got that one wrong,” Mike chuckled.
— Jim Owczarski (@JimOwczarski) April 15, 2020
Will miss seeing Willie Davis at the HOF, always present there when health permitted. Trading Davis to Lombardi only mistake Paul Brown ever made. Never missed game in 12 years. Not particularly tall but longest arms I’ve ever seen. Very successful businessman. Rest easy, Willie.
— Gil Brandt (@Gil_Brandt) April 15, 2020
RIP Willie Davis a great man first and was also a great football player HOF💯
— A. Highsmith (@alonzohighsmith) April 15, 2020
In life, we admire some folks more than others. Former @packers great Willie Davis, who died today at age 85, was a man to be deeply admired. Hall of Fame player, a Grambling grad who earned his MBA at U of Chicago, his post-playing biz career was exceptional R.I.P.@NFLAlumni
— Joe Browne (@JBeonTheHill) April 15, 2020
Wille Davis was one of my dad’s best friends. Willie was the greatest. Years ago he let me do a story about him for College of the Canyons. I’m sad, but happy my dad gets to hang out with him again. Rest In Peace. #williedavis #packers #nfl #legend https://t.co/3SZvs9pl4H
— John Kuperman (@JohnKuperman) April 15, 2020
Awwww man. RIP Willie Davis. 😢 I’ll never forget on my first trip to Green Bay you were sitting at the table beside myself and my friend. You laughed, chatted with us like we were old friends. 💗💗💗💗You will be missed. pic.twitter.com/EmF0NHB6jd
— Debi ✨🌟Remember why you started🌟✨ (@debiowens) April 15, 2020
Willie Davis defined legend: A field-tilting player for the Lombardi-era #Packers and @ProFootballHOF’er, but also a game-changing, trail-blazing smart businessman post-football — plus a very kind man even to those of us who only met him a few times. Statement from his family: pic.twitter.com/eXD2gMhxXV
— Jason Wilde (@jasonjwilde) April 15, 2020
Sorry to hear about the passing of Packer legend Willie Davis. I never had the opportunity to meet Willie, but he was a legend both on & off the field. The stories of him as a leader & teammate should serve as an example to everyone. Condolences to his family & friends.#GoPackGo
— Matt LaFleur (@CoachMLaFleur) April 16, 2020
Packers legend Willie Davis has passed away at the age of 85. He never missed a game in his 12 year NFL career. One of the greatest Packers and defensive players ever.
• 5X NFL Champ
• 2X SB Champ
• 5X 1st team All-Pro
• 60’s All-Decade team#RIPpic.twitter.com/jM747KqmsW
— GBP Daily (@GBPdaily) April 15, 2020
#Packers Willie Davis owned FM 102.1 (Hot 102 in the 1990’s) & AM1290 WZTI, Milwaukee. On the board of directors for Dow Chemical, Schlitz, Sara Lee & I think Coca-Cola. A featured player on Coke bottle caps. Lombardi would have been so proud of what Willie did after football. pic.twitter.com/AxlGjoAQ3t
— Mike Clemens (@MikeClemensNFL) April 15, 2020
Willie Davis was born in Lisbon, Louisiana, was a standout player at @Grambling1901 @GSU_TIGERS and became one of the all-time great defensive players in the 1960’s with @packers..Superb player, terrific businessman, but a better man in life. A real gentleman and leader in life. https://t.co/BbYa0jjiYG
— Michael Detillier (@MikeDetillier) April 15, 2020
Pro Football Hall of Fame announced the passing of Willie Davis, one of the game's greatest defensive ends and grandfather of OSU's Wyatt Davis.
Talked with Wyatt's family for a story two years ago. I enjoyed this anecdote from Wyatt's brother David about their grandfather. pic.twitter.com/tTm6vtlgLU
— billlandis25 (@BillLandis25) April 15, 2020
I’m sorry to hear the news. I worked for Willie Davis in Milwaukee managing his radio stations for ten years. It’s not often you have a boss who says”want to have lunch with me & Bart Starr, or Ray Nitshke”, and you do.
— ssinicropi (@ssinicropi) April 15, 2020