Julie Mae was born in San Diego, California, on May 17, 1959, the fifth child of Helenmae Wilhite and Ralph Lane. Her first three years were spent on Cartwright Street, where her dad served up his famous homemade ice cream to a constant stream of visiting family and friends.
In 1962, Julie’s family of eight moved to Alabama for the year. Time was spent with Grandma and Grandpa Lane eating watermelon and collecting chicken eggs; with Aunt Jeanette and her family digging up clams in Mobile Bay; and with Great Granny Baldwin at her house in the woods.
Returning to California, the growing family of ten moved to Oasis, where Ralph and Helen took over the Wilhite family citrus ranch. Here Julie blossomed. She was a spirited outdoor soul who loved any and all animals, including her horse Rocket, Rocket’s foal Little Bit, chickens, goats, pigs, dogs, and a lamb named Stanley that she raised as a member of Future Farmers of America in high school.
Living the ranch life with her seven siblings, Julie could be found riding her motorcycle to irrigate the citrus orchard or riding Rocket across the desert to visit neighbors. She was independent and called things just the way she saw them, earning the nickname Rebel.
When it came time to go to college, Julie headed to College of the Redwoods in Northern California. Julie’s sister lived in the area as well, and it was through Susan’s introduction at Marino’s bar that Julie met her future husband Craig Sumner, a local pharmacist. The couple’s wedding date was soon set. Shortly after, they expanded their little family with the arrival of their daughter, Sarah Beth, and then their son, Michael Tyler.
They remained busy as they purchased and expanded Barnes Arcata Family Drug store and settled into mini farm life in nearby Blue Lake, California. Julie raised two fast-growing youngsters and expanded her role at the pharmacy as the kids got older by managing staff and becoming a skilled pharmacy technician. She loved being at home with her kids in the garden; taking care of animals; hosting Sunday football parties, apple squeezes, and barbecues; and having her beloved annual canning and jam-making sessions. Above all, she loved spending time with her children. Tyler took after his mom in his love for dogs and Sarah shared many horseback-riding weekends with her mom.
Julie and Craig eventually built separate lives but remained loving parents. Residing on the Blue Lake farm, Julie worked as a pharmacy technician at Redwood Memorial Hospital in Fortuna and simultaneously earned her business degree at Humboldt State University. After graduating, she worked as a grant and contract specialist at Humboldt State University in the Foundation Office. She later worked for Eureka City Schools first in payroll and then in personnel.
In 2001, Julie married Charles Davy, a Humboldt County farrier. Together they shared a passion for animals, farm life, and travel. They saw the fall colors of the East Coast, went horse camping in the redwoods, and explored Oregon and Hawaii. At home they enjoyed many summer barbecues, games of badminton and croquet, tending their garden, and caring for numerous critters.
Julie happily gained even more family through this marriage, including Charles’ daughters Karmen and Jennifer; grandchildren Kelsey, Jaycie, Britnee, Hannah, and Hayden; as well as great grandchildren. She and Charles also became dedicated members of St. Albans Episcopal Church in Arcata, Julie serving as their bookkeeper.
In 2013, Julie was diagnosed with a rare cancer. Doing research diligently on neuroendocrine carcinoma, she quickly found a team of doctors to manage the illness as she continued her career and life. She remained a spirited and spiritual mother, wife, daughter, sister, and friend. She also remained adventuresome, going to South Africa with sister Jo Ann and Belize with Sarah.
Julie retired from Eureka City Schools in 2021 to focus on health and healing. Healthwise, she exceeded all expectations from her original 2013 diagnosis. However, on April 29, 2022, she joined friends and family in heaven. Her strong ethics, sense of humor, and passion for life remain forever in the hearts of those who knew her.
A memorial service for Julie Davy will be held on May 28th at St Alban’s Episcopal Church in Arcata at noon.
After the service, the graveside service will be at St Patrick’s cemetery in Loleta.
The celebration of her life will start at 3 p.m. at the Wharfinger Building in Eureka, and all are welcome to attend who wish to come together to celebrate the beautiful life of Julie.
The obituary above was submitted by Julie Davy’s loved ones. The Lost Coast Outpost runs obituaries of Humboldt County residents at no charge. See guidelines here. Email email@example.com.