James Clifton Davis

January 5, 1938January 21, 2021

James Clifton Davis, 83, of San Diego, CA, passed away on January 21, 2021.

Visitation will be 11:00 am to 1:00 pm on February 23, 2021 at El Camino Memorial – Sorrento Valley, 5600 Carroll Canyon Rd. San Diego, CA 92121. Committal service and Military Honors will be held at Miramar National Cemetery on February 23, 2021 at 1:00 pm by invitation only due to current Miramar National Cemetery restrictions. Recorded video will be made available at a later date for those unable to attend.

James (“Clifton,” “Dave,” “Bubba,” “Jim”) was born in Marlin, Texas to Ross and Emma Lee Davis on January 5, 1938. He was raised in the United Methodist Church along with his three siblings, Jerden, Stanford (Ross), and Alice. He attended University High School.

In 1956, he enlisted in the United States Navy. He served active duty for 20 years in the US Navy Seabees and 10-years in the USN Ready Reserves. He volunteered for Operation Deep Freeze III in Antarctica, where he had his 20th birthday. He witnessed Castro’s takeover of Cuba when he was stationed at Guantanamo Bay. He was a combat veteran of seven campaigns in the Vietnam War. His awards include the Navy Achievement Medal with combat valor device “V”, Combat Action Ribbon, Navy Unit Commendation Ribbon with a bronze star, Navy Meritorious Unit Commendation, Navy Good Conduct Medal with three bronze stars, Vietnam Service Medal with a silver star, two bronze stars and Marine Corp device, and Vietnam Gallantry Cross with Palm, among others.

After active duty, he worked for the Navy Exchange and Navy MWR for over 27-years combined. During that time, he opened the new Exchange stores at Miramar NAS and Napoli, Italy, reopened 32nd Street Officer’s Club and reopened the Admiral Baker golf course in San Diego.

He met his beloved wife Su Yueh Lin (Susie) while stationed in Taiwan. They married on February 17, 1968 and subsequently traveled the world with their three children, Ibe (Linda), Cindy, and Jason, having been stationed in Taiwan; Texas; Guam; San Diego, California; and Napoli, Italy; among others. Throughout these travels, he gained life-long friends who became family to him. He had a mischievous streak, a dry sense of humor, widely varied interests, and profound sense of patriotism. He took care of his family, including his parents and mother-in-law. He loved his nieces and nephews like his own. He loved spending time with family and friends, cooking, going fishing and shooting with his kids, nephews and dear friends, and reading Louis L’Amour, science fiction and thriller novels. He loved his “critters” and always cherished his pets. He told only the funny stories about his experiences, such as those about his sun bear Willie and duck Murgatroyd in Viet Nam, wrestling an Emperor penguin in the South Pole, and eating out of a pig trough when he made Chief. He loved his God, his family, and his country.

We will miss him dearly. He was the best husband to Susie; best father to Ibe (Linda), Cindy and Jason; best father-in-law to Lisa; best grandfather to Haylee and Hannah; best great grandpa to Ryker; best brother to Jerden, Stan and Alice; best brother-in-law to Edna, Sylvia, Gene, and Earl; best uncle to all his nieces, nephews, and grand-nieces and -nephews in Texas, Taiwan, and beyond; and best friend to those lucky to be in his life.

James is preceded in death by his mother Emma Lee, father Ross Sr., brother Jerden, sister Alice, sister-in-law Sylvia, brothers-in-law Gene and Earl, and his Uncle Roy & Aunt Lynn.

Flowers and/or Memorials may be sent to El Camino Memorial – Sorrento Valley.


  • Visitation

    Tuesday, February 23, 2021


James Clifton Davis

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Sandra Gharabaghli

February 19, 2021

I remember when I was stationed in Guam and we went to picnics on the beach with Jim & Susie and the kids when they were young. We were newly married and did not have children yet. Jim loved good food and we shared dinners together at Jim & Susie’s house and at our quarters. We have all been friends for over 40 years and we will greatly miss Jim and his great wit.