Jo Ellen Davis


Jo Ellen Davis (Jones) passed away on Wednesday, Nov. 15, 2023, at age 91. She spent her last day surrounded by family whom she dearly loved and who dearly loved her.

Jo Ellen was born in Grant, Oklahoma, on Jan. 15, 1932. She was the middle child of Jewell and Garlin Jones. In 1942, Jo Ellen’s family moved to Coolidge, Arizona, where she was valedictorian of both her junior high school and high school classes, receiving a scholarship to attend Arizona State College (now ASU). This was the beginning of a lifelong focus on learning.

Jo Ellen met James Gibson Davis Jr. (Jim) at a First Baptist Church social function. On March 15, 1951, Jo Ellen and James were married, shortly before Jim shipped out to fight in the Korean War. They had three children: Barbara, Joanne and Jamie (James).

In the 1960s, Jo Ellen went back to ASU and got her undergraduate degree and master’s degree in art education. After earning her art education degree, Jo Ellen worked as the Coolidge High School art teacher and then as the Coolidge Elementary art teacher and as a 5th grade teacher. During this time, Jim also got his undergraduate degree and master’s degree in industrial arts education.

They moved to Tempe, Arizona, after Jim got a teaching job and Jo Ellen worked at a Phoenix law firm. She returned to teaching when both of them got teaching jobs with the Nogales School District.

In 1976, their teaching jobs brought them to Globe, where Jo Ellen taught in the Globe School District and at Holy Angels Catholic School. In the 1980s, she returned to ASU for a second master’s in social welfare and worked in Globe for Arizona Long Term Care System (ALTCS) as a case manager until retirement. She was instrumental in getting hospice care for Globe.

After retirement, Jo Ellen took on volunteer work with the Friends of the Globe Public Library, setting up senior services, delivering meals to the elderly and being active in IOOF. Jo Ellen is preceded in death by her parents and two brothers, Raygene and Fred Jr.

She is survived by her husband Jim and three children, Barbara (Gino Zappia), Joanne (Jay Slotkin) and Jamie (Elaine Davis), eight grandchildren, and 11 great-grandchildren.

A Celebration of Life service was held Saturday, Nov. 25, 2023, at Lamont Mortuary, 328 S. Hill St., Globe, Arizona, with a reception following.

The family respectfully requests that, in lieu of flowers, a tax-deductible tribute donation be made in Jo Ellen’s name to either:

(1) Friends of the Globe Public Library (https://www.;

(2) Gila County Historical Museum (;

or (3) Peppi’s House-TMC Hospice (