Pleasant “PE” Etsel Davis

November 07, 1919 - September 29, 2019
Pleasant “PE” Etsel Davis
P.E. Davis stands outside of his home in Pittsburg on Wednesday. MICHAEL STAVOLA/THE MORNING SUN

SMSgt Pleasant Etsel (PE) Davis, USAF, Ret., 99, died September 29, 2019, as a result of a fall.

PE was born November 7, 1919, in Pittsburg, KS, to Charlie and Stella Hizar Davis. He graduated from Pittsburg HS in 1937 and enlisted in the Army Air Corp in 1940. He served in WWII as a gunner/radio operator in the Pacific.

He married Billie Jeane Harkins on February 23, 1947, in Liberal, MO, where they made their home until he was recalled to the Air Force in 1951. He served a total of 29 years retiring in August 1969. PE and Billie then made their home in Liberal where he drove a route for Frito-Lay for 10 years. After a few years in the Wichita area, they moved to Pittsburg where he ferried cars for Pittsburg Ford. He finally decided maybe it was time to retire when he turned 94.

He is survived by daughter Carolyn Kretzer (John) of Wichita; a granddaughter, Molly, of Wichita; a grandson Benjamin (Taren) of Edmond, OK; and a great-grandaughter Elliot.

PE was preceded in death by his parents; his wife Billie; an infant son John Randall; a brother Clarence; and a sister Inez Davis Oehme.

He leaves behind a legacy of how to live a good life. When recently asked what he attributed his longevity to, he responded, “No grudges and good wine.” The family is grateful for all of his friends in Pittsburg who looked out for him and listened to his many stories.

Visitation will be Thursday (Oct. 3) at Brenner Mortuary, 6:30-8:00PM. A private military graveside service will be held at a later date. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Pittsburg Public Library, 308 N. Walnut, Pittsburg 66762. PE served on the library board for many years and counted the “girls at the library” among his many friends.

The memorials may be left at or mailed to the Brenner Mortuary, 114 E. 4th St., Pittsburg, KS 66762.

Friends may leave condolences online at

Arrangements are under the direction of the Brenner Mortuary, Pittsburg, KS.


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