St. Rep. Davisson dies after battle with cancer
State Rep. Steve J. Davisson died Sunday, Sept. 19, 2021, at his home after a long and courageous battle with cancer. He was 63.
“My good friend, Steve Davisson, was a good friend to anyone that met him, and, for that, we’re all fortunate and mourn his loss,” said Gov. Eric J. Holcomb. “As a man of faith, family and community, Rep. Davisson was a model citizen legislator, daily carrying out the duties that made him an obvious Sagamore of the Wabash.”
In August, Holcomb awarded Davisson the Sagamore of the Wabash, one of the state’s highest honors, for his outstanding service to the state of Indiana.
“His ability to take on tough and complex issues with common sense and that famous smile was a gift from above,” Holcomb said. “Janet and I will keep his wife, children and many grandchildren in our prayers as they find peace for such an unimaginable loss for their family, loved ones and his constituents that were so honored to have him represent them over all these years in our Statehouse.”
Davisson, a Republican from Salem, first ran for the office of District 73 State Representative in 2008 and lost to incumbent Dennie Oxley. He ran again in 2010 for the same position and won and was re-elected every two years since. In 2018 and 2020, he ran unopposed in the November General Elections after defeating opponents in the May primaries.
House District 73 includes all of Washington County and portions of Harrison, Clark, Jackson, Lawrence and Orange counties.
“I am deeply saddened to hear of the passing of Rep. Steve Davisson,” said Lt. Gov. Suzanne Crouch. “He was such an admirable public figure who always looked out for Hoosiers and the state’s best interest. We already shared a connection to Salem by the time we were colleagues in the Indiana House of Representatives, because my uncle, Donald Crouch, was a family dentist in Salem, and his patients would go to Rep. Davisson to fill their prescriptions. I always enjoyed catching up and talking about our families.
“I will remember him for his positive attitude,” she continued. “No one would have ever known he was sick because of his upbeat spirit, which was his outlook throughout his life. I hope Hoosiers will keep his family, friends and constituents in their prayers during this challenging time.”
Davisson graduated from Scottsburg Senior High School and Purdue University, where he earned his pharmacy degree. He was a pharmacist for St. Vincent Hospital in Salem and for the drug store on the Salem town square until it closed. He then struck out on his own and founded the Good Living Pharmacy in Salem in partnership with several others, where he was president and CEO.
“Steve Davisson lived an extraordinary life of love, courage and service,” said Indiana House Speaker Todd Huston. “While short in stature, Steve was a giant of a man in service to his family, community and state. He lived his life full of love and optimism, which made him such a blessing to know. Steve will be greatly missed by me and everyone who had the privilege to know him.”
Davisson served as vice chair of the House Committee on Public Health and as a member of both the House Commerce, Small Business and Economic Development Committee and the House Agriculture and Rural Development Committee. He previously served on the Ways & Means Committee, which drafts the state budget.
“Steve Davisson was a great public servant and a good friend,” said Scott Fluhr, chairman of the Harrison County Republican Party. “Steve was the gold standard for servant leadership and public service. He represented only a small part of Harrison County, but he was always willing to help in a big way whenever asked.”
Davisson participated numerous times in the Third House sessions sponsored by the Chamber of Commerce of Harrison County and Harrison County Farm Bureau. He also was a staple at the Tri-County Farm Bureau sessions that addressed school-related topics, often answering questions and providing comments.
Davisson’s funeral will be Friday at 11 a.m. at Salem Church of the Nazarene. Visitation will be tomorrow (Thursday) from 1 to 9 p.m. at Hughes-Taylor Funeral Home – Salem Chapel and Friday after 9 a.m. at the church.
The governor has ordered flags at the Statehouse and in all of the counties in which any part of House District 73 is located be lowered to half staff on Friday from sunrise to sunset.
Survivors include Davisson’s wife, Michelle, five children and several grandchildren.
Donations in Davisson’s honor may be made to the Washington County Community Foundation, P.O. Box 50, Salem, IN 47167.