US Army

LaVern W. Davenport

April 13, 1922 ~ May 6, 2020 (age 98)


LaVern (Vern) Whitney Davenport

Vern was born on April 13, 1922 in Endicott, New York, the son of LaVern Mashier Davenport and Helen (Whitney) Davenport.  He attended schools in Endicott and Cortland, N.Y. and graduated from Homer High School in Homer, N.Y in 1938.  He attended Cornell University and Franklin and Marshall College graduating in 1942.  Later that year he joined the Army and completed his basic training at Camp Breckenridge, Kentucky.  After basic training he attended the Infantry School at Fort Benning, Georgia and was commissioned a 2nd Lieutenant.  He served in Northern France and Germany as a platoon leader in Co. E, 112th Inf., 28th Division.  After serving in the 68th Pennsylvania Keystone Division, Vern was assigned to teach at the Infantry School that was established in Fontainebleau, France; where he taught both American and French soldiers infantry weapons.  The French Government recognized his work and presented him with a medal.  Vern was awarded the Combat Infantry Badge, WWII Victory Medal, European African Campaign Medal and retired with the rank of Captain.  

After the war Vern attended Boston University where he obtained a Master’s Degree in Education.   At York High School, (York, Maine) he taught math and science and started the Guidance program at the school.

Vern received the Bronze Star for Heroic and Meritorious Achievement at a ceremony on Veteran’s Day 2019.

The high point in Vern’s life was in 1982 when he married Shirley Chilson from Andover, Mass.  They became a family with Shirley’s son, Richard Chilson from Rockwood, Maine and children Richard, Jr. and Samantha.                                                       

Vern was a member of the York Rotary Club, the American Legion and the York Golf and Tennis Club.  He was on the board of the York Ambulance Association Inc. for many years.

The Rotary Foundation of Rotary International named Vern a Paul Harris Fellow in 2017, for his outstanding service.  He represented Sentry Hill at the “Remember Me” celebration at a ceremony in Augusta in 2017.   

Vern is survived by his wife Shirley, stepson Richard, Sr. and step grandchildren Richard Jr. and Samantha.  He also leaves a nephew, Hamilton Gale and wife Bonnie of Annapolis, Maryland and a niece, Susan Stevens and husband Robert of The Villages, in Florida.                                                                                        

If desired, donations may be made in Vern’s memory to:  York High School Scholarship Fund:  1 Robert Stevens Dr.; York, ME 03909 or The York Ambulance Association:  P.O. Box 238; York, ME  03909

Please omit flowers.



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