Carolyn Frances Mixon Davis passed away Sunday, March 20,2022 at age 86 at home on Johns Island, South Carolina from cancer. She was born in 1935 in Largo, Florida to John Albert Mixon and Maude Brannen Mixon. At an early age, her family moved to Savannah, GA where she spent most of her life. She grew up in downtown Savannah and later moved to Windward Island, Savannah, GA after marriage.
Carolyn was an avid reader and an exceptional student. As a child, she walked to the library daily to check out new books, and her love of books would carry on throughout her life. Her childhood education took place at Grace United Methodist Kindergarten, Henry St. Elementary School, Richard Arnold Junior High, and Savannah High School. At age 16, Carolyn’s mother unexpectedly passed away and she found herself on her own since her father lived in Florida. She decided to graduate high school a semester early. In a class of 250, she ranked 3rd and she received a full scholarship to college. However, still grieving her mother’s death, Carolyn decided to stay in Savannah and secure a job with Southern Bell as a telephone operator and move to the YWCA. At age 18, she was introduced to her future husband Jack Devere Davis Jr. by her sister and was married at age 20. The marriage soon brought two children, Jack and Jill. While raising her children and maintaining her home, she enrolled at Armstrong State College at age 29. Carolyn graduated in 3 years with Cum Laude academic honors from Armstrong with a B.A. in Social Sciences and Education. She was the first student to graduate from Armstrong State College with a degree in education and certification to teach. She felt her greatest achievement was taking an academic overload every other quarter, while maintaining her family life, staying on the honor roll, and graduating early with Honors.
After college, she began teaching history at Windsor Forest High School in Savannah, GA. While working as a history teacher, she attended Georgia Southern University to pursue her Master’s Degree in Social Sciences. After finishing her master’s degree at age 37, she and her family moved to Evans, GA where she began teaching History and English at Appling Middle School. During this time, she also attended the University of Georgia to pursue certification in Gifted Education. After acquiring her certification at age 40, she became one of the first Gifted Education teachers in the state of Georgia. Carolyn loved working with and challenging gifted students to achieve their very best. She was often overwhelmed by their talent, energy, and stamina. While teaching gifted, she earned a School Psychologist certification through the University of Georgia. After receiving this, she became one of 3 school psychologists for the Columbia County Board of Education School for the next 8 years until retirement.
All of Carolyn’s students- whether they were history, English, gifted, or resource – remember her fondly as the teacher with colorful historical stories, high standards, and for challenging them to be their best. After 26 years of service to the State of Georgia as a professional educator, she retired and moved back to her beloved Savannah, GA.
Outside of her professional achievements, Carolyn fostered a rich personal life. Her Christian faith was her rock and source of comfort as she negotiated her life’s journey. In Savannah, she was a member of Grace United Methodist, Bull Street Baptist Church, South Gardens Church of Christ, Calvary Baptist, Windsor Forest Baptist, and Wesley Monumental United Methodist Church.
Carolyn had a penchant for adventure. At age 34, Carolyn led her family in a year-long planning effort after supper every evening to take a cross-country camping trip. That summer, she and her family embarked on a 3-month trip visiting nearly every National Park. Later in retirement, Carolyn joined her daughter, nephew, and lifelong neighbor, in backpacking Europe for 3 months. Her love for the beach and sea air led her to spend many hours walking the Tybee Island seashore.
In addition to adventure and good books, Carolyn loved family life and all of its details. She was an accomplished seamstress, a wonderful cook, and had a green thumb. She loved good movies and popcorn, watching professional tennis, good food, old recipe books, musicals, a porch chair and breeze, neighborhood walks, and wind chimes. She was a Brownie Scout leader, Sunday School teacher, and a lover of animals and nature.
Throughout her life, Carolyn was always educating herself and those around her. Those who knew her best-respected her for her breadth of knowledge ranging from history to current events, to growing plants, and sewing tricks. She explained history with a flair and was a go-to person for explanations of current events. She would weave engaging stories despite her inclination toward shyness. Her hands were always busy and her sewing room was always full of projects. Carolyn was always happy to share her tips and tricks. She was an inspiration and a blessing to have shared memories with.
At age 80, Carolyn and her husband moved to Charleston SC to be close to her daughter and grandchildren. Her surviving family members include her daughter Jill Carmichael (Walter), son Jack Davis (Margaret), niece Judy Glisson Diederich, nephew Walt Barnes, niece Renee Barnes Dillard, and grandchildren: Tiffany Davis, Jesse Davis, Sara Davis, Davis Carmichael, and Callie Carmichael. Predeceased are her parents- John and Maude Mixon, her sister Doris Mixon Sapp, her brother John Cecil Mixon, and her husband Jack Devere Davis Jr. A memorial service for her will be held Saturday, March 26 at 12:30 pm at McAlister-Smith Funeral Home located at 347 Folly Road, Charleston, SC29412. In lieu of flowers, memorials can be made in her name to the American Red Cross, POB 37839 Boone, IA 50037-0839.
Arrangements have been entrusted to McAlister-Smith Funeral Home located at 347 Folly Road, Charleston, SC29412. 843-614-8494