Memorial Spaceflights


Michael Jefferson Davis

1947 - 2022

Michael Jefferson Davis was born in Birmingham, Alabama, on June 18, 1947, to Kathryn Baker Davis and Jefferson N. Davis.  He grew up in Birmingham with two sisters, attended Samford University, and graduated from the University of Alabama in Huntsville.  He married Jane Ann Bradford on November 18, 1975.   In 1979, he became a father to a beautiful baby girl, Melissa Michelle Davis.

 He taught high school math for a few years, then changed careers (because his wife told him he had to get a paying job!) to a software engineer in the space program at Johnson Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Alabama.

In the summer of 1980, Mike was offered a promotion, and he and his family moved to Houston, Texas, to work for contractors at NASA, ending his career working for Lockheed Martin.  He was a team leader and wrote code for both the Space Station and the Space Shuttle.  He worked on the Columbia, Challenger, Discovery, Atlantis, and Endeavour launches.  Mike received many awards for his work during his career, including a certificate of appreciation for the transformation of the International Space Station to Six-person Crew Capabilities, a flag in commemoration of the Phase 1 Shuttle-Mir Program, a coin that had been to the Space Station, and many pins representing different flights, some made from metal that had been in space.  He would love that he is spending eternity on the moon!

Mike loved his wife, his daughter, bridge, poker, dancing, and golf.  He was a member of the American Contract Bridge League and became a life master early in his career.  He loved playing bridge but also loved thinking about bridge theory.  Poker interested him because of his math background.  His favorite game was Omaha hi-lo.

His wife tried to interest him in dancing, but he said no, so she took lessons without him.  A few years later, he decided that maybe he should take up dancing because his wife was having entirely too much fun without him.  He worked hard learning how to dance and enjoyed it much more than he thought he would. 

Mike found golf a fascinating game, and he studied it with the same fervor he worked on poker, bridge, and dancing.  He got to be a pretty good “duffer.”

He was a wonderful father, husband, brother, and uncle and will be sorely missed.

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