Raymond Gilbert Davis, a decorated war hero and retired Marine general, died on Sept. 3 of a heart attack. He was 88.
Davis graduated from Georgia Tech in 1938 with a bachelor’s degree in chemical engineering. He joined the Marine Corps during World War II and fought in Guadalcanal and in the Peleliu Islands campaign. For his service and bravery, he was awarded the Navy Cross and the Purple Heart. When he returned to the states, Davis worked as the chief of the infantry station at the Marine Air-Infantry School in Quantico.
As a lieutenant colonel in the Korean War, Davis commanded the 1st Battalion, 7th Marines on the retreat from the Chosin Reservoir in 1950. Ordered to hold a key mountain pass and relieve a rifle company, Davis led his men through eight miles of icy pathways in freezing temperatures. For accomplishing his mission, he received the Medal of Honor from President Harry S. Truman, two Silver Star Medals, a Legion of Merit with Combat V and the Bronze Star.
From 1968-1969, Davis was in the thick of the battle as the commanding general of the 3rd Marine Division in Vietnam. His efforts brought him more honors, including a second Legion of Merit and three personal decorations from the Vietnamese government.
After 33 years in the service, Davis retired in 1972 and lead the Georgia Chamber of Commerce. In May, he was nominated for the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the highest civilian award recognizing exceptional meritorious service.