The Herald, Sharon, Pa.


February 26, 2014

Ernest Sylvester Davis

D.C. man raised in Masury was Amtrak ticket agent

- — Ernest Sylvester Davis of Washington, D.C., died Saturday (2-22-14) in Holy Cross Hospital, Silver Spring, Md. He was 83.

Affectionately known as “Rabbit,” he was born Oct. 7, 1930, to John F. and Edna Davis, who preceded him in death.

Ernest was raised in Masury and accepted Christ at an early age.

He received his education in Brookfield and soon after graduation he moved to Washington, D.C., where he joined the Army. He served from 1948 to 1952, including a tour in Japan during the Korean War.

In 1952, after completing active military service, he joined the Army Reserve and he began his career with the Washington Terminal Co. (Amtrak.) He started as a mail handler and worked his way up to become the first African American ticket agent.

After 43 years of railroad service he retired, his last position being ticket agent for the U.S. Capitol. He was the first African American agent to work Amtrak’s Capitol ticket office.

Ernest was greatly admired and was sought out by several Congressmen during his time there. He retired from the Army Reserve with 30 years of service.

In June 1955, Ernest married the love of his life Bernice “Doll” Caison. God blessed them with 58 years of marriage.  They took many trips together and traveled the world. Ernest loved to eat, but only Bernice’s cooking.

Ernest was a member of New Samaritan Baptist Church in Washington, D.C.. for a period of time. He worshiped at Mount Pleasant Baptist Church in Washington, D.C., until the time of his death.  

Ernest was a member of Ionic Lodge 17 Free & Accepted Masons, PHA.

He was also an avid Redskins fan and a season ticket owner for more than 60 years. He had a love for Cadillac cars and owned more than seven of them throughout his lifetime.

He leaves to cherish his memory his devoted wife Bernice; his daughter, Edna Stanley and a stepdaughter Susan Norwood; also one granddaughter LaShone “Nikki” Davis (Omar); three brothers David (Ruby), Atlanta; Paul (Sadie), Youngstown; and William, Washington, D.C.; two sisters, Rose McNair, Washington, D.C.; and Janet Grear, Sharon.  

Two brothers preceded him in death, James and Edward Davis.

He also leaves to cherish his memory a host of nieces, nephews, other relatives and friends.

He will be buried in Arlington National Cemetery.

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