Jerard T. Davis passed away Thursday, Nov. 26, 2020, in his Kamiah home.
Jerard was born May 11, 1950, to Ivan K. Davis Sr. and Beverly A. Davis. He was a Nez Perce tribal member. Jerard was the eldest of six children. Jerard grew up on the Davis property at Tom Taha along with his siblings, Albert Davis, Lyle Davis, Kyle Davis, Jerilyn Davis and Ivan Davis Jr. After Ivan Jr. was born, the family moved to Kamiah. Jerard attended the Kamiah School District. During his high school years, Jerard was band manager of two bands made up of fellow classmates. He was part of the band Electric Stopwatch and Afterlife Blues Band. Using a Super 8 film camera, Jerard made a film inspired by the Beatles’ “Help” movie. He would show the film on the Wa-A’Yas Community Center wall during band shows. Jerard graduated from Kamiah High School in 1970.
After high school, Jerard attended Institute of American Indian Arts in Santa Fe, N.M. His main course was silk screening. While attending IAIA, Jerard met Louise Harrison, of Oklahoma. They married in 1971. After they finished school in Santa Fe, the Davis family traveled to Santa Fe to pick the pair of them up. Jerard and Louise were brought back to Kamiah. Once they were settled, Jerard started working for the local sawmill. In October 1973, Jerard and Louise welcomed their daughter, Rose M. Davis. Louise said Jerard was very proud and happy to have a baby girl. They later divorced.
Jerard continued to be part of Rose’s life. He lived in different residences throughout Kamiah. He continued working at the sawmill until the mid-1990s. In 1997, Jerard was hired on at the It’se Ye-Ye Casino of the Nez Perce Tribe. He first worked in the surveillance department, then transferred to the security department. After the security department, he worked in a supervisory position. Jerard then went back to the security department and there he stayed until his death. He had been employed at It’se Ye-Ye Casino for 23 years.
Before his death, Jerard loved going to rock ’n’ roll concerts throughout the Northwest. He took great joy in purchasing movies, guitars and music. He would often travel out of state to different record stores to buy music. He very much liked spending time with his brothers, cousins and friends. Jerard and his brothers would get in the car and drive to the mountains. He would simply love to be at his home, watching movies, WWE, football or just listening to music with his brothers and cousin Mose. Jerard loved his Dallas Cowboys football team. He also enjoyed going to pow-wows — even moreso when his granddaughter started dancing in the pow-wow circle. Jerard loved his two grandchildren, Lauraly A. Souza and Harrison J. Souza, very much. He had an inability to say no to them and gave them whatever they wished for.
Jerard is survived by his brother, Ivan K. Davis Jr., of Kamiah; his daughter, Rose M. Davis, and son-in-law Mark A. Souza, of Lapwai; his grandchildren, Lauraly A. Souza and Harrison J. Souza, of Lapwai; nephews and nieces Kyle Davis Jr., Aaron Davis, Tyson Davis, Nilson Davis, Leander Goodteacher, Helen Goodteacher, Sally Nahsonhoya, Brandon Umtuch, Michael Jackson Jr., Nikki Davis, Teri Davis and Etta Davis; and many cousins.
Jerard was preceded in death by his father, Ivan K. Davis Sr.; mother Beverly A. Davis; brothers Kyle Davis Sr., Lyle Davis and Albert Davis; and sister Jerilyn Jackson.
Jerard T. Davis, brother, father, grandfather, uncle, cousin and friend, will be greatly missed. We will miss his kind nature, his sense of humor and, most of all, his smile.
Given the circumstances of today’s world, only a graveside service will be held at 1 p.m. today in Kamiah. There Jerard will be laid to rest.