Gary and Sharon Minium retired to Dunellon in 1996. Denise said that her father, who’d undergone open-heart surgery and survived lung cancer, wanted peace and quiet along the Withlacoochee River.
He spent his time with his grandkids, and fishing.
In addition to his wife and daughter Denise, Minium is survived by daughters Traci Minium of Phoenix and Lori Minium of Port St. Lucie. Son Scott died in 2007.
Loved ones planned to gather in Dunellon to remember Minium. The family suggests memorial donations to St. Jude’s Children’s Hospital and the Wounded Warrior Project.
Although he didn’t graduate from high school, William Watt Davis became a financial expert, tracking down all manner of economic criminals, from old-style check “kiters’’ to sophisticated Internet money launderers.
He professionalized the Miami Beach Police Department’s economic crimes unit, then — after a stint as Indian Creek Police chief, restructuring it to meet FDLE requirements — worked as a Florida Department of Revenue investigations supervisor, then as the Supervisory Criminal Investigator for the state Comptroller.
He wrapped up his career in international bank asset-tracing as a state liaison to the federal High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area of South Florida.
He especially disliked anyone who took advantage of the elderly, son John said, and “took down a lot of gypsy operations that targeted older people.’’
As president of the Miami Beach Fraternal Order of Police Lodge #8 in the late 1970s and early ’80s, Davis fought for salary and pension parity with Miami and Coral Gables, which made him unpopular at City Hall and probably hampered his career, his son said.
He also held leadership positions with the City of Miami Beach Fire and Police Pension Fund.
“He was honest and upright,’’ said Maj. Lou Reilly, a police contemporary and golfing buddy, now retired. “He was well liked. By the book.’’
He was tall and tough but quiet, Reilly said, and “once knocked somebody out with one punch.’’
John Davis, known as Scotty, recalls walking the Lincoln Road beat with his dad in the pre-gentrification days, when all the retirees in folding chairs knew Officer Davis by name.
Davis grew up in New England, working on fishing boats and at a Cape Cod cranberry bog as a teenager. He joined the Marines at 17, served — and froze — in the Korean Demilitarized Zone.
His next assignment was more to his liking: embassy security in Havana, Cuba. There Davis met Olga Morell, a local girl who was teaching Spanish to the security force. He became fluent — and married Olga in 1957.
“He was the only Spanish speaker in the Miami Beach Police Department for years,’’ son John said.
He became an accomplish Cuban cook, John said, specializing in picadillo.
The Davises settled in Miami-Dade to raise five children, including a set of twins. The family vacationed on Key Biscayne until they were able to move there.
Davis earned first a GED, then an associate of science degree in criminal justice from Miami Dade College, a bachelor of science degree in criminal justice from Florida International University, and a certificate from the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School in Public Sector Money Management.
He also became a certified fraud examiner.
Of Scottish heritage, Davis was raised in the Anglican Episcopal Church, but became an observant Catholic 10 years ago through a grandson with whom he was particularly close.
John Davis said his father suffered a heart attack during the summer, and was scheduled for surgery in a few weeks.
In addition to his wife and son John, Davis is survived by daughters Olga Marie Berkowitz, Beatriz Barrios and Elizabeth Ann Davis, as well as son William, all of Miami-Dade County.
A funeral Mass will be sung at 7 p.m. Friday at St. Agnes Church, 100 Harbor Dr., Key Biscayne.
The family suggests memorial donations to the American Heart Association.