GCT band director lays down his baton after 25 years

PARAGOULD, AR (KAIT) - Everywhere you look, people are doing a "Great Job" to make this a better Region 8.  

For the last 25 years of his 36-year career, Danny Davis has helped students at Greene County Tech make beautiful music.
Now, he will soon be putting down his baton for the last time.
And I sat down with Davis as all around him students scurried to get the great hall ready for the band banquet and awards presentation.
Davis said music has blessed and influenced his entire life. He said that what allowed him to bond with his students.
"It was the music that brought us together, it was the catalyst that brought us all together so I'll miss that." he said. And music also developed his family as well. Davis continued "There's been so many good things that have happened to us because of this. I wouldn't have met my wife if it hadn't been for music, we met in choir."
Linda Davis told me that in order to see her husband she would have to work near him with the band. For years she has directed the flag line and taught theater classes, also at GCT.
A quarter century of Greene County Tech musicians have come and gone under this baton.But for Danny Davis's students it's more than music.
Graduating senior Cory Huffman said Davis had hammered one thing into his bands from day one.
"Make sure that everything is tradition and family.So the band becomes one big family." Huffman said. "I will miss that." Huffman will join the UCA band in the fall at college.
Davis, We're very family oriented here. We like to think of ourselves as a family and we don't want to take away too much of that for the kids." He says they limit how many trips and contests they go to (and win) every year.
The Davis retirement is two fold. Linda will also retire. Mrs. Davis said the calls and visits have been pouring in.
Linda Davis was setting up the awards tables in the new auditorium, she paused for a moment. "We did not in any stretch of the imagination think of the response that we have had with our retiring."
Sophomore Mandy Jackson said Davis could deal with any situation.
"You can tell he cares a lot about us and when anything got too intense he can kind of break the ice with a joke and doesn't make it too hard on us."
The band came in around 2 and began to practice "Pomp and Circumstance" for the May 18th graduation. With a flourish the music faded out.
Davis, "It's time, I've done my due." He said, "And we need some young blood. We need somebody in here with a fresh perspective that can take these kids to the next level."
Looking at all the trophies and accomplishments hanging on the walls including pictures of their daughter who is a band director and a son an army medic, both of whom were in his band. It was obvious replacing Danny Davis will be hard. But he didn't seem worried. He has faith in his kids.
Davis, "They've all talked about how are they going to keep going now that you aren't here."
"So what is your legacy?" I asked. He thought a moment, "The legacy is the things we've inspired in them."
You've done a great job, Danny Davis.
To nominate someone who's doing a "great job" in your neighborhood, just click on this link.

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