Coastweek - - Ruth
Ann Davis died peacefully on Friday, April 23, 2004, the day after her
Shakespear wrote: “Age did not wither her, nor custom
stale her infinite variety”- and what a full life she
pioneer aviatrix in India in the 'twenties she flew her father
in her de Haviland Leopard Moth around Bengal on his
duty trips as Commissioner of Police.
during the 'Battle of Britain', serving in the Air
Transport Auxilliary, she delivered replacement Spitfires
and Hurricanes from the factories to the R.A.F. squadrons at
Biggin Hill and North Weald.
war and marriage she was a well known opera singer in the
north of England.
Ann Davis became a legend in the naval circles - rather like the
famous 'Lady in White' in Durban.
Her rich soprano
voice was her asset to the very end and always a joy to hear.
Ruth joined her
brother Colonel Dick Swain in Kenya in the 'forties, Dick being a
successful farmer in Kitale.
She moved to the
coast and resided with the Selbys in Kikambala.
In 1992 Ruth
bought Juanita Carberry’s house in Likoni with its inimitable views
over the approaches to Kilindini.
Here she continued
Juanita’s custom of welcoming all Royal Naval warships entering
Mombasa saluting with the White Ensign and Jack flying from the
flagpole in her front garden overlooking the Likoni leading marks.
She became a
legend in the naval circles rather like the famous 'Lady in White' in
Her next of kin is
her nephew Tony Swain, who was awarded the Military Cross in
1955 while serving with the Kenya Regiment.
Our sympathy goes out to Tony and his
wife Angela, great 'carers' of Ruth in her latter years.