Ann & Dick David
Ann Hollister David & Richard F. David
Ann Hollister was born in her aunt Elna's house in Martinsville, Indiana, on June 15, 1919, the daughter of Inger (Christiansen) & Joe Hollister.
After her father's death in a railroad accident when she was a toddler, she was raised by her widowed mother. She excelled at school and was valedictorian of her high school class. Ann attended Jamestown College in North Dakota and received her degree in mathematics. She had always had a talent for words and several of her poems were published in her college literary journal, so it wasn't a complete surprise when she became a newspaper reporter after graduation, working in Dickinson, then in Illinois.
After the war, she went back to work at the Dickinson Press where she began dating a young linotype operator named Dick.
Richard F. David was born in Killdeer, North Dakota, on April 17, 1919, the son of Pearl (Smith) & Fred David.
His parents were pioneer homesteaders in the Killdeer area. After his father's death when he was ten, the family moved into town where his mother was the local telephone operator.
He did well in school, skipping a grade in elementary school, and was a high school track star. He worked as a printer's devil at the Killdeer Herald and later learned to operate a linotype in trade school. He worked for a while at the Dickinson Press, then joined the Army to see action in the Pacific during World War II. When he returned, he again went to work at the Dickinson Press and soon began dating a young reporter, Ann Hollister, who also worked at the newspaper.
Ann and Dick were married in Dickinson, North Dakota, on March 31, 1946. In this picture, from the left, are the best man Don David, bridesmaid Theresia Essert, the minister, Ann, Dick, the bride's mother Inger, the bride's uncle Hermie, and the groom's mother Pearl. The little boy with the Teddy bear is Jackie Malmstead.
Shortly after their marriage, Ann & Dick moved to Choteau, Montana. Their first child, a daughter named Gabrielle after her great-uncle Gabe, was born in 1947. She was not only the first child but the first grandchild for both her grandmonthers and was spoiled rotten by her parents, aunts, uncles, and grandmothers.
When Gabrielle was about a year old, they bought the Kerkhoven Banner and moved there, joined by Ann's mother Inger to free Ann for the hours she spent as the newspaper's editor. Dick was the publisher. While they were in Kerkhoven, they also acquired a lady cat named Albert and a lady dog named Blackie. The pets were part of the family and moved with them through their entire lives.
And, hard on the heels of the pets, came their second child, a son, named Joseph Donald David after his Uncle Don and a long line of Joe Davids, and in honor of his maternal grandfather. Joe was born in 1951. He was a happy baby with thick dark curls and the young parents enjoyed showing off their offspring. Soon after Joe was born, Ann officially learned how to drive a car and acquired her first driver's license -- she was only 33 years old.
In 1954 the family moved to St. Clair, Missouri. Dick worked at a newspaper and Ann stayed home with Inger and the kids and prepared for the birth of their third child, a son named Hollister John David in remembrance of his maternal grandfather, who was born in 1955. When the new baby was brought home from the hospital, where he had been delivered in an emergency caesarian section and had managed to catch chicken pox in the nursery, his big brother Joe pulled back the blankets from the little spotted face and crowed, "It's a Hoppy Doodle!" From then on he was Hoppy Doodle, Hoppy, Hop Toad, or just plain Hop, the name he uses today.
While Hop was still an infant, the family moved to Eldon, Iowa, where Ann & Dick had bought the Eldon Forum and ran it with Dick as publisher and Ann as editor. Gabrielle joined the family work force folding papers and wrapping singles for the princely wage of 25¢. Joe sorted slugs and shocked his first grade teacher by telling her he'd spent the previous afternoon throwing bastards in the hell box. Ann had to explain to the indignant lady that that was exactly what her son had been doing, the two phrases being perfectly acceptable printing terminology.
The family loved Eldon but little Hop was not well. He had severe asthma and was in the hospital nearly twenty days out of every month. When he was a toddler, Ann took him to Florida for a winter to see if that would help -- it didn't. Around this time, a fire burned down the Forum. Ann & Dick rebuilt the newspaper and decided to try Arizona for Hop's health. Ann, Inger, and the children went first, living in a trailer in Tucson, while Dick stayed behind in Eldon until they were sure Hop's asthma was helped by the dry climate.
Hop stayed relatively well in the desert so Dick sold the paper and found a job with the Casa Grande Dispatch and the family moved again. One of the men Dick worked with, Ted Mauntz, wanted to own his own paper and the two men struck up a partnership. They bought the Buckeye Valley News in 1961.
After a while, the Gila Bend Herald was acquired and Ann spent part of each week in Gila Bend to editor that paper. In 1962 the family moved there and Dick made the trek to Buckeye.
By the mid-sixties, the partnership had soured and it ended in October 1963 with Dick keeping the newspapers. After a few years Dick sold Buckeye paper. However, he had found a weekly paper in Ajo whose publisher was terminally ill. He soon bought the Ajo Copper News and the family moved to Ajo in 1967, except for Gabrielle who was by then married and had started her own family. Ann again drove to Gila Bend on a regular basis until they sold the Herald to the publisher of the Casa Grande Dispatch.
Ajo proved to be their final stop as they melded into the life of the copper mining community. They were both active in social and civic groups. Ann's mother Inger continued to keep house and the boys, Joe and Hop, both were graduated from high school there.
After their son Hop returned to the Copper News staff in 1978 and their daughter Gabrielle joined them in 1980, Dick and Ann decided to ease into retirement, passing the publisher's title to Hop and the editor's title to Gabrielle. Their son Joe was making a career as a machinist and wasn't interested in returning to work in a newspaper.
Through their lifetimes, Ann and Dick both shared a love of the written word and devoured books as avidly as others do chocolate. Ann also loved cats, math, and art. Dick enjoyed a good game of poker and a beer or two. Together they liked to camp and see the great wide world.
Dick died on July 2, 1983, just a few months after his mother-in-law. He and Ann were camping in the White Mountains at the time and had told their children just days before that it was like being on their second honeymoon. Ann began a journey into the mists of Alzheimer's Disease about this time and gradually declined until she followed him in death on July 19, 1993. Their ashes are buried in the Ajo cemetery.
Gabrielle David, creator of these pages,
is the daughter of Ann Hollister and Richard F. David
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