News for the Betsey Cox Camp Family

Jean S. Davies 1927-2018


On Sunday, April 22, 2018, our founder, Jean Smith Davies, passed on peacefully, surrounded by her family.  Mrs D. was 90 years old.  She led a life that inspired many people in the town, state, country and profession in which she lived and worked.  She and her husband, Charles Davies, built nearly all the buildings at camp while simultaneously developing a camp program and culture that has empowered and that continues to empower generations of participants over the 65 years of its existence.

Here are some excerpts from the Obituary that appeared in the Rutland Herald on Friday, April 27:

  “Following a very active life, Jean Davies, age 90, died peacefully on April 22, 2018.  Born in Vermont in 1927, she was a resident of Pittsford, Vermont for over 80 years.  As a child of the Depression, Jean was always a make-do/can-do person.  She greeted everyone with a smile (and always remembered names and faces).

           Jean’s passion was summer camping.  In 1954, Jean and her husband Charlie, founded Camp Betsey Cox for Girls.  Jean was Director there for 35 years.  Thousands of campers and staff know Jean as “Mrs. D.”   Jean was President of the Vermont Camping Association for years.  She was recognized in Vermont and in our country for her work with summer camps.  Jean was co-founder of the General Breed Fund that provides camperships to support children who would not otherwise have access to the summer camp experience. 

            Jean was Chair of the Pitsford Planning Commission, President and Curator of the Pittsford Historical Society, a Girl Scout leader, a Cub Scout Den mother, a 4-H Club leader, a Sunday School teacher and a school teacher….She was a main contributor to the preservation of the Pittsford Ice Caves, was on the Vermont Natural Resources Council and on the Vermont Chamber of Commerce Board.  She was a hiker, gardener, skier and knitter.  Her primary interest was being with and interacting with people.

            She is survived by her children, JoAnne Kenyon (Paul) of Vermont, Sherry Wilson (Dick) of Texas, Rick Davies of New Hampshire, Pat Davies (Joe) of Colorado and Chrissy Davies of Colorado. 

             There will be a memorial service to celebrate Jean’s life, on Saturday, June 9 at 2:00 p.m. at the Congregational Church, 121 Village Green, Pittsford, Vermont.  There will also be a memorial service at Camp Betsey Cox, date to be announced.

            In lieu of flowers, Jean requested that contributions be made to the summer Camp scholarship fund, The General Breed Fund (please note that your gift should be directed to Camp Betsey Cox), 85 Prim Road, Suite 201, Colchester, Vermont  05466 (General Breed Fund) or to the Pittsford Historical Society, PO Box 423, Pittsford, Vermont   05763.” (Pittsford Historical Society)

As plans take shape for an event in Mrs. D’s honor here at camp, we will make sure all members of the camp family are made aware of the date and time.  We hope many of you will be able to return to your camp—to Mrs. D’s camp, to share stories and to celebrate her life.


Lorrie Smith Byrom and Devri Byrom, Co-Directors

  Jean S.Davies Obituary April 26, 2018

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