His parents owned and operated the Davis Funeral Home in Dearborn, Missouri from 1914 to 1948.
Only child Tara Diane (15 January 1953 - 9 February 1970) died in a car crash at age 17.
Graduated from Fairmount High School in 1962
Winner of the Outstanding Young Men of America Award, 1972; National Cartoonists Society, Reuben Award for best humor strip, 1982, 1986, and 1990, Segar Award, 1985, Cartoonist of the Year, 1990; Golden Plate, American Academy of Achievement, 1983; Marketing Hall of Fame award, American Marketing Association (southern California chapter), 1983; Sagamore of the Wabash Award, State of Indiana, 1984; National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences ("Emmy") Award for outstanding animated program, 1984, for Garfield on the Town, 1985, for Garfield in the Rough, 1986, for Garfield's Hallowe'en Adventure; named Volunteer of the Year by Indiana Council of Fund Raising Executives, 1985; Forest Conservationist of the Year, Indiana Wildlife Federation, 1990; Hoosier Pride Award, 1990; Arbor Day Award, National Arbor Day Foundation, 1990; Distinguished Alumnus Award, American Association of State Colleges and Universities. Honorary doctorates from Ball State University and Purdue University, both 1991.
He was very close to "Dallas" (1978) co-star Victoria Principal, who bore a strong resemblance to his late daughter, and he had Principal's picture along with his daughter's in his pocket when he was buried.
In April 1981 the writers of "Dallas" (1978) decided not to write his death into the storyline right away. They initially thought about replacing him with another actor, but out of respect decided that only Davis should play Jock Ewing. Jock was kept alive on the show (he was down in South America drilling for oil) until early 1982 when it was learned that he died in a plane crash.
Best remembered by the public for his role as Jock Ewing on the 1980s soap opera "Dallas" (1978).
First Garfield comic strip appeared on 19 June 1978
On the 22 August 1980 strip, Jon and Garfield are sitting on a hill on Jon's parents' farm. Jon says "You're really getting into this farm thing, aren't you, Garfield?" Garfield says "Yup. Wanna swap dirt jokes?" The original copy of the strip says "Sheep jokes". It was caught after the proofs came out. The correction was sent, but some papers ran the original. The Garfield book it's in (#4) also printed the original.
Favorite movie is Airplane! (1980)
Survived by his mother, Ethyl O. Davis, who died on January 10, 1984 in Overland Park, Kansas.
Garfield's weight is 27 pounds. This is revealed in the 21 January 1986 strip, in a series of Ripley's parodies, when it says "A Jon Arbuckle claims to own a cat", which is Garfield, "who can eat 10 times its body weight. To verify this claim, we offered the cat 270 pounds of lasagna". (The strip ended, saying "The cat only ate 219 pounds of lasagna" and Garfield saying "Things went so well in rehearsal!")