Monday, May 19, 2008


It is with very great regret I announce that Dai Davies passed away earlier this afternoon. As you will know, Dai was disgnosed with oesophagogastric cancer earlier in the year and died peacefully in his sleep at the hospice at lunchtime today.
Sympathies and all our love go to Patricia and the family. I will pass on details of the funeral arrangements as I receive them.

Andy Farrell
Hon secretary
Association of Golf Writers

Colin Farquharson writes: Dai Davies was always friendly enough to me in the days when our paths use to cross at professional and amateur tournaments, but he did not suffer fools gladly and his fuse could be short at time. He used to tell me his favourite golf events were the Cup matches.
When he fell seriously ill, I sent an E-mail to his wife, Patricia Davies, who wrote on golf for The Times, and expressed the hope that he would make it through to this year's Curtis Cup, especially as it was being held over the Old Course, St Andrews.
It was not to be. What a pity! Dai would have loved it, I am sure.
Dai was a better, more perceptive writer than I ever was and his skill with words shines through in the following piece he wrote for the Association of Golf Writers' Newsletter, earlier this month.
I am not ashamed to say it brings a tear to my eye when I read it, as I have done more than once.

From Dai Davies:

In Damon Runyon’s almost unbearably sad little tale, The Lemon Drop Kid, the author creates a character called Rarus P. Griggsby, an older man who is “nothing but a curmudgeon and by no means worthy of attention.”
Well, as a fully paid up Press Tent curmudgeon – Tim Glover recently offered the opinion that it was the best of my qualities – I have been overwhelmed by the amount of attention colleagues and others in the golf world have thought “worthy” since my cancer was diagnosed.
Patricia and I have been all but inundated by flowers, notes, cards and emails, not to mention visits, all of which have helped me to cope more cheerfully with what, right from the start, has been a very difficult situation.
This kindness should not have come as a surprise, given the nature of the golf world which has always been generous, almost to a fault.
But we curmudgeons don’t always realise, or appreciate, the good things that surround us, which, in this case, are the people.
I, for one, now do and instead of a Rarus P Griggsby we now have a converted curmudgeon. That’s the good news. The bad is that the cancer continues to progress and while no one, not even my oncologist, knows how many holes I have left to play, I suspect I am on the last hole, and maybe even on the last green.
But, no matter. Bill Elliott asked the other day if I am angry at what has happened to me and the answer to that is "No."
I have lived the life I always wanted to, working for a newspaper I always wanted to, going to lovely places around the world, populated in the main by people I would have chosen to be with. Surely no journalist could ask for more?
Some years ago I was chatting with Mark Wilson, who, apropos of nothing much, suddenly came out with the observation:
“You know, Dai, these ARE the days of wine and roses.”
He was right then and would be even more so now.
So enjoy them. Despite appearances, I did. – Dai Davies

*Dai Davies was the golf correspondent at the Birmingham Post from 1965 until 1982, when he joined the Guardian. He retired in 2004 but continued to file stories and columns for a number of magazines and newspapers. He was 69.



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