Norma Lee Davis

August 21, 1942 - January 23, 2022

Normaleedavis

Norma was a surprise baby, but not a surprise to her mother, Nellie. Twelve hours after the birth of her twin brother, Opal, and after Nellie’s insistence, “I know there is another one!” Norma was born on August 21, 1942 in Granby, MO. The midwife said she was too frail to survive.
Her father, Thomas Eugene Watson, and mother, Nellie May (Cole) Watson, were the proud parents of a new set of twins. Norma and Opal were added to brothers Neil, Dale, Clarence, Tommy, Wilford, and sisters Doris, Esther, and Ruthie. Norma would eventually have another brother and sister, Margie, and Paul David. There were 12 in all. Nellie always set aside a piece of chicken for Norma.

Norma was raised around music. Her father, Gene passed the time playing guitar and singing bass. Between church, and her piano at home, Norma found her God given gift of an ear for music that would go on to bless the hearts of all who knew her. While listening to and learning from her favorite gospel quartet, Hovey Lister and The Statemen, Norma asked God.
“Please let me play for a gospel quartet, and please send me a Christian husband.” Norma was always quick to talk to God.

God would lead Norma to the town of Galena, Kansas. Her gospel quartet was there. Charles, the bass singer, had a cousin named Gale who was serving in the Air Force on Guam at the time. Charles’ wife Nancy played matchmaker and told Norma she should write to Gale. In the early part of 1964 Norma and Gale met for the first time when Gale made a surprise visit in full uniform at First Baptist Church in Galena. Norma and Gale sneaked peeks at each other while she played for the Ambassador Quartet. After the singing and church service, Norma and Gale dated for the first time.

The courtship ensued, and Norma won approval from Gale’s family. David, Ruth, Bev, Danny, Janice, and Roger, and Norma’s sister-in-law, Judy would soon become her extended family.

On February 13, 1965, David Gale Davis became Norma’s husband and lifelong partner. They were an inseparable team. They would go on to have 3 children, Chris, Penny, and Laura.

Norma was a highly skilled office secretary for various businesses. She was a civil service secretary at the VA Hospital in Little Rock, Arkansas, where she retired in 1997. She gave private piano lessons on the side. She was always active in her church. She provided full love and support for Gale who would go on to retire from the Air Force. Norma was the pride of Gale’s life. They served God together for 55 years of marriage until Gale’s passing in 2020.

In 1996, Norma finished sewing a beautiful wedding dress just in time for her future daughter-in-law, Tanya, to walk down the aisle and marry her son, Chris. No one knew at the time she had a stage 4 diagnoses. The following 25 years was a continuation of an incredible life that she would not let be defined by the cancer.

At Chris’s wedding, her daughter Penny met her future husband, Don. Penny and Don would later become missionaries in Southeast Asia. Between these two weddings, Norma was introduced to her future church family at Bethel Baptist Church in Kountze, Texas. At her first visit to Bethel, she marched right up to the piano like that was where she belonged. The first congregational song Norma played at Bethel was “Jesus Saves.”

Several years later, in 2003, she and Gale would move to Silsbee, Texas and join the church family at Bethel. The love Norma and Gale had for their church family was unmeasurable. Norma and Gale’s pastor, Randall, and his wife, Missy, and all the children at Bethel were their weekly joy. Aside from playing piano every church service, she taught the ladies Sunday school class. Norma became legendary in her relationship to her Savior and she talked to God about everything. Her prayer would be that everyone had that same relationship. God gave her 25 years more than what she was diagnosed for and she displayed a witness of her Savior that could not be ignored.
In that extended time, she saw her third child, Laura, get married to Jim. They gave Norma two grandchildren, James and Colin. Her love and pride for them was evident in the videos and pictures she proudly showed of them.

Norma had four grandchildren, Dustin, Jenee, James and Colin. She had three great grandchildren, Sylus, Hannah, and Liam.
Norma authored two published books. She faithfully wrote a daily blog. Norma most likely knew every gospel song written and if she didn’t, she could play it by the start of the second verse. Her last song to play at Bethel was “I Don’t Know About Tomorrow (But I Know Who Holds My Hand).”

In the recent days of her failing health, she said, “I am ready to be with Gale.” On Sunday morning, January 23, 2022, Norma went on to be with Gale, and she is finally talking to her Savior face to face.

Funeral services will be at 10:00 am, Tuesday, February 1, 2022 at Derfelt Funeral Home, Galena, KS. Pastor Blaine Nordstrom will officiate. Burial will be in Oak Hill Cemetery, Galena, Kansas.

A memorial service for both Norma and Gale will be at 11:00 am, Saturday, February 5, 2022 at Bethel Baptist Church, Kountze, Texas. Lunch will be served following the service.

Memorial contributions may be made to either Bethel Baptist Church, Kountze, TX or First Baptist Church, Galena, Kansas in care of the funeral home.