Our beloved mother, sister, grandmother, Tapper, Queen, and friend passed away on the evening of June 24th, 2021, just a few weeks prior to her 82nd birthday. Known for her warm personality and penchant to make friends in any situation, Gail's joyful dance through life was a testament to her adaptability, resilience, and self-determination.
Born in Chicago on July 28th, 1939, to Leo and Lillian Teplitz, Gail was raised in a close-knit Jewish family on the legendary Maxwell Street on the city's South Side. Her father was a heroic pilot in World War II and was lost in combat over the English Channel in 1944 when Gail was just 4 years old. Gail cherished the Purple Heart her father was awarded for his sacrifice and it remains a revered family heirloom to this day. Gail's mother remarried some years later and she was raised thereafter by her parents, Lillian and Hank Stierer, in Chicago and Miami. Gail is a proud graduate of Chicago's Morgan Park High School (1957) and spent time at the University of Miami. Gail was a master shorthand writer and could type at lightning speed, skills she often credited for keeping her in high professional demand.
Vibrant and full of life from childhood to her senior years, Gail's hobbies, travels, and interests allowed her to see the world and almost always included a social aspect. An accomplished bowler with a fierce strike ball, Gail attended Nationals numerous times in cities across America. Talented at beading and ceramics, Gail's work has been shared with and enjoyed by many of her friends over the years. Ahead of her time in numerous aspects, Gail was a pioneer of race relations in the 1960's and advocated for norms that have since gained widespread acceptance. A longtime resident of Madison, WI in the 1970'S-80's, Gail was a big time Wisconsin Badger fan and especially proud of her son Michael's graduation from that esteemed university. Gail loved the beach and warm weather, and her fondest memories include time spent on the shores of South Haven, MI with her family in the summers of her youth.
Gail's many career highlights include her work in the banking industry, being proprietor of a chain of family-owned pet centers, serving as a legal assistant, and leading the jury services and marriage licensing operations of the Clark County Clerk of Courts in Las Vegas until her retirement in 2005. Gail's most endearing role was as a mother, guiding and supporting her boys throughout life and teaching all by example the values of kindness, acceptance, and being true to one's self.
Gail spent the last 30 years in Nevada and built a rich social life as a resident of Pahrump through her many affiliations and friendships. Gail's ability to remain vibrant more than 15 years into her retirement was fueled by her love of dance and her longstanding membership in the Nevada Silver Tapers. Gail was proud to have been an elite Diva Dancer & Ambassador of Pahrump, and ever grateful for the friends and unique experiences that came from her adventures with the Silver Tappers. One of Gail's most noteworthy high points in life was being crowned the Queen of Ms. Senior Golden Years Nevada in 2006 and carrying out the royal duties and responsibilities of that distinction ever since. Pahrump was good to her and she responded in kind by raising its profile and promoting its virtues with everyone she met.
Gail is survived by her three sons, extended family, and friends too numerous to count (but you know who you are). Family members include her boys - John Doherty (Judy) of Griffith, IN, James Doherty of Pahrump, NV, and Michael Davis (Lettie) of Round Rock, TX. Grandchildren - Shannon & Erin Doherty, Alia & Peyton Davis, and Heather Blythe, Emily & Megan Doherty, as well as 7 great grandchildren. Sisters - Sherry Smith (James, taps 2013) of Cedar Lake, IN, & Ingrid Lebofsky (Jay) of Delray Beach, FL.
Gail was welcomed into eternal peace by her parents Leo Teplitz, Lillian Teplitz Stierer, and Hank Stierer, beloved Aunt Rose & Uncle Mickey Gold, Cousins Barbara Kaye & Marty Minster, Cousins Sheila & Dave Biedermann, former husband Tyrone Davis, dear friends Ferrol Kestin & Vivian Nuzum, Alex Trebek, and a host of other loved ones and angels that ascended before and patiently awaited her arrival.
Gail's family will host a Celebration of Life at the Mountain Falls Golf Club in Pahrump, NV on Wednesday, July 14th, with visitation beginning at 2:00 PM followed by a short service and her commitment to the Book of Remembrance at 3:00 PM. All family members and friends who were touched by Gail are welcome to attend and share their favorite recollections during this memorial event. Appetizers, hors d'oeuvres, and refreshments will follow. As Gail was a 25-year survivor of breast cancer, please consider donating to the American Cancer Society in lieu of flowers.
Embodying the spirit of Forever Young until her final days, Gail's zest for life, boundless energy, positive outlook, and the deeply sincere connections she made with so many of us will endure well beyond the limits of her physical presence. We honor her by endeavoring to extend those characteristics in our own lives. No goodbyes, only good memories!
To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Gail Iris Davis, please visit our floral store.