Park Davidson Obituary (1934-2021) – Greensboro, NC

Davidson, Park Rutan

May 14, 1934 – January 22, 2021

Park Rutan Davidson died on January 22, 2021 with his family after a short illness. He was born on May 14, 1934 in Keosauqua, Iowa, to the late William UB Davidson and Margaret Bernice Park Davidson. He was a graduate of Fairfield High School, the University of Iowa, and the University of Iowa School of Law.

After graduating in 1957, Park accepted a position at Burlington Industries in Greensboro. He was on J Spencer Love’s staff in NY and worked in various departments before returning to Greensboro. He worked briefly in the jersey department and as head of production planning for Burlington Socks before returning to the treasurer’s area in 1964. In 1971 he became Deputy VP of Finance and Head of the Treasury Department. He was the Executive Director of the Burlington Foundation and was promoted to Treasurer in 1989. After 39 years, he retired from Burlington in 1996.

Park took pride in developing the first profit-sharing scheme for wage workers in the textile industry in 1963, which was copied many times by other companies. He served as chairman and director of the Profit Sharing Council of America, chairman of the Profit Sharing Research Foundation, and director of the Burlington Employees’ Federal Credit Union, which he founded in 1979 (Choice FCU, now a branch of Self Help). He has served as trustee and president of the GTCC Foundation, trustee of Wesley Long Community Hospital, director of the fund board of the North Carolina School of Science and Mathematics, trustee of the former L. Richardson Hospital, and served as an elder of the First Presbyterian Church.

He was the co-founder and president of the Greensboro Cerebral Palsy School, which was an innovative model for the nation. He was director of the Chamber of Commerce and director of the Greensboro Country Club. He was also the chairman and director of the Greensboro Housing Foundation, which is now Affordable Housing Management.

His love as an outdoor enthusiast led him to salmon fishing and hunting in Alaska and Oregon, hang gliding in New Zealand, snowmobiling in Yellowstone Park and white water rafting in Colorado. He also enjoyed traveling with Patsy and spending many vacations abroad. They enjoyed receiving his high school friends and others at their Ocean Isle Beach home, which included visits to The Carolina Opry in Myrtle Beach, fishing trips, and delicious southern food. Many memories were made with family and friends at the Core Banks Club of which he was a member.

Park shared his love of music by singing and playing the trumpet and ukulele. He was in the 34th Army Chapel and sang in churches and other places all his life. He even attended an Ozzy Osborne concert with his grandson. He and Patsy enjoyed plays, musicals, films, and often took the family to various entertainment shows.

He was raised by two educators and was a self-made man. He will be remembered for his quick wit and humor, and be a great teacher, mentor, and friend to many in the community.

He was preceded by his 59-year-old wife Catherine “Patsy” Carson Davidson, his parents and his brother Kent Davidson in death.

He is survived by his daughters Catherine Cooke (Marty) of Shallotte, NC and Mary Park Rogers (Rex); and son William (Bill) Davidson. His grandchildren include Katie Cooke Smith (Tyler), MaryLou Cooke, John Cooke, AnnaBelle Cooke, Carson Rogers, Sarah Worth Rogers, Banks Rogers, and Ethan Davidson.

The visit will take place on February 1st from 1pm to 6pm at Hanes Lineberry N Elm. A funeral service will be held on February 2 at 2 p.m. in Green Hill Cemetery.

In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Cone Health Heart and Vascular Center, 1200 North Elm Street, Greensboro, NC 27401 and the First Presbyterian Church, 617 North Elm Street, Greensboro, NC 27401.

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Published by Greensboro News & Record January 24th to January 25th, 2021.

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