Riding for Dexter

Published 4:53 pm Tuesday, September 19, 2023

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AHOSKIE – It was a perfect day for a ride through the countryside.

Dexter Davis, a 1988 graduate of Ahoskie High School where he excelled academically and athletically, passed away last year from colon cancer at his home in Wake Forest. Staff Photo by Cal Bryant

Over 55 bicycle enthusiasts straddled their colorful two-wheel modes of transportation here Saturday, taking part in an inaugural event that honored a late Ahoskie native while raising funds to help those battling colon cancer.

The Dexter Davis Ride for Colon Cancer began and ended at the Ahoskie Creek Recreational Complex. Riders of all skill levels pedaled their way along four routes: 62, 30, 17, and 3.5 miles. Upon their return, the riders were treated to food, fellowship, and music.

Davis, a 1988 graduate of Ahoskie High School where he excelled academically and athletically, passed away last year from colon cancer at his home in Wake Forest.

“I am inspired by the memory of my dear friend Dexter Davis, who bravely battled colon cancer but unfortunately lost his life to this terrible disease. In his honor, we established this ride to honor his memory and to help others in their fight against colon cancer,” said Clyde Everette who organized the event.

Thanks to the registration fees and donations, Everette said over $4,000 was raised. That money, he said, will assist local people in the area help pay for their gas or accommodations during cancer treatments.

“We had bicyclists coming from Atlanta, Charlotte, Chesapeake, and a group – Good Company Cycling – from Rocky Mount,” Everette noted of Saturday’s turnout.

“The day was wonderful,” Everette added. “It was a great bunch of people coming together to remember our friend while enjoying good food and good music. We decided we’re going to do this again next year, the same weekend in September.”

Everette said he and Davis had been friends since childhood.

“We’re grew up in the same neighborhood,” he recalled. “As a person, Dexter was gentle and pleasant…never seen him mad. After he moved away and enjoyed the success he had in business, he was still the same man.

“After he retired, we would ride together when he came home. There was a group of about six or seven of us. We would ride 20 to 30 miles on Saturdays,” Everette added.

Earline Davis, Dexter’s mom, attended Saturday’s festivities at the park. Two of her granddaughters and her daughter took part in the bike ride.

“This is what Dexter loved….he loved that bicycle, he would ride all day,” said Mrs. Davis. “I’m so happy to see a big turnout of folks this morning. This means the world to me.”

Earline Davis (seated) chats with one of the riders that took part in the event that honored her late son. Staff Photo by Cal Bryant

She spoke of her son’s fight against two medical ailments, saying that Dexter first suffered a stroke before learning he had colon cancer.

“He came home and stayed with me for a while after he had the stroke,” she said. “He eventually decided to go back to his home in Wake Forest and that’s when he discovered he had colon cancer.”

Dexter Davis passed away on Sept. 13, 2022. He was 52 years old.

He made a lot of friends over the years, including those at North Carolina A&T State University where he was a member of the Aggies football team.

After graduating from A&T, Davis landed a job with Foot Action, a shoe company. He eventually rose to the position of company vice president. He ended his career with Puma.

“I was so proud of Dexter and the man he became,” said Mrs. Davis. “Even though he’s gone, I’m at peace and days like today make me happy for the life he led. His memory lives on.”

About Cal Bryant

Cal Bryant, a 40-year veteran of the newspaper industry, serves as the Editor at Roanoke-Chowan Publications, publishers of the Roanoke-Chowan News-Herald, Gates County Index, and Front Porch Living magazine.

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