Helen & Chauncey Davis

CHAUNCEY D. DAVIS FILM BIO (for the new Mike Morris Elementary School)
    Chauncey D. Davis was born October 13, 1900 in Arlington, WA.  He attended high school in that area and then studied at Bellingham Normal which had an emphasis on teaching degrees at that time.  While attending Bellingham, he drove back and forth to Seattle on the weekends to court his soon to be life-long wife, Helen Mattson.  After graduation and their marriage, they moved to Long Beach, WA where Chauncey was a teacher, coach and avid hunter and fisherman.  My father, James H. Davis, shared with me many times that the ducks, geese, razor clams and fish Chauncey harvested were a prime staple of the family's diet during the Depression in Long Beach.  Chauncey progressed to being Superintendent of Schools for all of Pacific County.
    Chauncey and Helen moved to South Bend just prior to WWII and lived there the remainder of their lives.  Helen wrote "Washington My Home" the official state song and Chauncey became Superintendent of the South Bend School District #118.  Upon Chauncey's retirement, he and Helen started the business Davis Insurance & Real Estate Agency, Inc. in 1953 featuring a Pacific NW Insurance Company called The Farmers Mutual Insurance Company of Enumclaw, Washington.  For a period of time, Chauncey was vice president of the subsequently renamed Mutual of Enumclaw Insurance Co.  The Davis Agency still represents Mutual of Enumclaw to this day.
    Chauncey was honored during Dave Spogen's tenure as Superintendent with the renaming of the South Bend Elementary School as the Chauncey Davis Elementary.  Our entire family felt greatly honored by this recognition.
    Although Chauncey, Helen, my father James and mother Marion have all passed away, Chauncey's legacy lives on at The Davis Agency through his grandson Phil.  Further, Helen's musical legacy also lives on through grandson Phil and great grandson, Maxwell James Davis (younger brother Miles D.A. Davis) and as evidence of same, the music which you hear accompanying this film was written and performed by the rock group CHROMUS of which Phil Davis (keyboards), Max Davis (guitars), Mike Peterson (drums), Don Bird (bass), Gordon D. Lynn (recording), Scott Karnas (vocals on "Under the Ruins") and SBHS Principal Jason Nelson (vocals on "Dance of Time") are performing members.
    The newly-erected Mike Morris Elementary now stands on the same site.  Our entire community takes tremendous pride in this modern facility, but still fondly remembers Chauncey Davis Elementary as well. 
                            With kindest regards,
                            Philip D. Davis, Grandson

A little about Helen Davis
Written by Lola Cain 2021
    In 1983, as part of the process of writing this history of Montesano I had to get permission from Helen Davis, the author of 8 of the songs I wanted to use, to incorporate her songs into the musical.  And so our friendship began.
    She was an absolute delight. Spicy and forthright; engaging and opinionated. The joy of getting to know her was one of the great joys of working on writing a history appropriate for Montesano.  I quickly learned that the songs I requested I be able to use were from an operetta Helen wrote titled, Eliza and the Lumberjack.  And I learned it represented only a small portion of all she had written.  In her lifetime Helen wrote well over 300 songs.
    Her most famous song is Washington, My Home, which she wrote in 1950.  It was adopted as the official Washington State Song in 1959.
    Helen Davis was well known as the matriarch of South Bend.  She played the piano at the South Bend Methodist Church for more than 25 years. As of 2021 that venue was conveyed to the Willapa Players for live theater and music, and Helen would be thrilled.
    She also started Davis Insurance & Real Estate Agency Inc., with her husband, Chauncey, in 1953, and she remained actively involved in the business until her death.
    Helen made a difference. She was a very active, highly regarded leader in South Bend, as evidenced by a park being named posthumously in her honor. Her legacy of love for her community, and for Washington, lives on. Helen was born November 18, 1905 in Zanesville, Ohio. She was 87 years old when she passed away December 31, 1992. Helen Davis will be forever remembered... and forever missed.

Last updated on 2-2-2021 by Brian Davis