NEW HEADING 1
Davis left a legacy in West Stokes community
December 11, 2009By Robert Money of West Stokes High School
The Stokes News
As much as the recent death of Stephanie Davis shook the West Stokes community last week, the legacy she left behind will be remembered even more.
Davis, 18, was crossing the street near Emory University in Atlanta on Friday when she was struck by a car. She died early Saturday as a result of her injuries.
Davis, a native of King, graduated from West Stokes High School and was a freshman at Oxford College of Emory University.
She played volleyball, soccer, softball and was on the swim team during her time at West.
Her coaches recalled Davis' standout character and a bright smile that was so contagious.
Swimming coach Marie Plummer was a close friend of the Davis family.
"Stephanie's mom sent me a text message (Friday)," Plummer said. "I went to Atlanta and spent Saturday with them and got to say goodbye to Stephanie.
"There are no words to put with Stephanie. She walked the walk. The easiest part of dealing with her death is that there is no question where she's going."
Davis was active at King Moravian Church and had a servants' heart - taking part in different mission trips. She led Bible studies and the Fellowship of Christian Students at school. Davis also was involved in Regional Youth Council.
"She had no ability to judge. That's what made her good at mission work," said Plummer, who added Davis was her unofficial assistant swim coach.
"She never saw (people) for what they weren't. That's something I could never do. She had a heart of gold. That's why people were drawn to her faith. She didn't have to preach it. She radiated love. A lot of teachers were talking about that. She never got angry."
Crystal Boyles coached Davis on the volleyball court.
"When I heard the news it just broke my heart," Boyles said. "She always had a smile, win or lose. She wanted to win and she wanted to come away with something positive about the game. Ecclesiastes 9:10(a) (Whatever your hand finds to do, do it with all your might), that was a great verse for her. Whatever she did, she did it with her whole heart.
"Incredible, incredible girl."
Boyles got to know Davis her first year coaching volleyball, which was Davis' freshman year.
"She had a strong Christian base. She was an angel in a Christmas play," Boyles said.
"She was involved at the Laurel Ridge Moravian Camp in North Wilkesboro. She led camp songs and brought them back to school, to volleyball camp."
Davis played soccer her junior and senior year with the Wildcats for coach Billy Robinson.
"I'm amazed at how many people she touched," Robinson said. "A lot of times she would talk about things going on at church, things she was involved in. She had a high level of character. Her parents did a good job of raising her. Her parents are outstanding people."
Davis' parents are Rick and Lynn. She has two sisters, Chelsea and Daphne, now a freshman on the swim team.
Robinson had known the family for several years.
"She just was a dedicated young lady with high morals," Robinson said. "She seemed to be a motivator to the rest of the team and she always seemed to have a positive attitude."
The Davis family has received an outpouring of support in the last few days.
As of Tuesday afternoon, a Rest In Peace Stephanie Davis page on Facebook had reportedly close to 20,000 hits and more than 1,600 members.
The page featured photos and video clips as well as countless wall posts. A video tribute also had been posted on YouTube.com
"You could meet her once and she's your friend for life," Boyles said. "One of her friends said Stephanie gave great hugs."
Many of the coaches remembered Davis' goofy personality.
"She had a funny sense of humor," Plummer said. "When she started to laugh it was all over."
Added Boyles: That's Stephanie. She was goofy but she was always having fun."
Robert Money was the statistician when Davis was a freshman on the softball team under head coach Julie Gammons.
His daughter Elizabeth played with Davis at Chestnut Grove and on the King Little League All Star team that won a state championship in 2005.
"The smile," Money said. "She was always upbeat and always encouraging. She always had a special way to break a stressful moment."
Gammons said Davis was by far one of the happiest people she had ever been around.
"She loved life. She had such a good air about her. People wanted to be around her," Gammons said. "My thoughts and prayers are with her family. I'm sure she is in a better place now. I hate it for her family. My thoughts and prayers go out to them. Sure she is in a better place now. I hate it for the West Stokes family and for her family."
Davis excelled academically as well - and was pursuing a career in Medicine.
The Oxford campus has more than 700 students.
In high school she was involved in countless activities on top of academics and athletics.
Davis was a junior marshal and gave the invitation at West's graduation.
"I really don't know when she slept," Plummer said.
Davis wasn't slack in sports either.
She earned All Conference honorable mention honors in soccer and volleyball last season.
"She was a fine young lady. Very spirited. Probably never met a stranger. She just beamed and talked to people," West athletic director Annette Johnson said.
"She enjoyed all her sports and gave 110 percent in anything she did. She was a smart kid. When she put her mind to something she accomplished anything she wanted to. She will be greatly missed by all of us."
According to an msnbc.com report, the driver of the vehicle did stop, and police in DeKalb County said no charges would be filed.
A memorial service will be held Friday at 7 p.m. at King Moravian Church.