1st December 2020

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Tracey Davis, Chronicler of Ups and Downs With Her Famous Father, Dies at 59

In addition to attaining fame as a singer, dancer and actor, Mr. Davis led a much-scrutinized social life. He belonged to the crew of rakish midcentury celebrities known as the Rat Pack, which included his longtime pal Frank Sinatra, who was the best man at Mr. Davis’s wedding in 1960, when he married Tracey’s mother, the actress May Britt. Mr. Davis was Black and Ms. Britt was white, and their union brought applause from supporters of interracial marriage and bomb threats from others.

MGM announced plans last month to make a movie about Mr. Davis based on Ms. Davis’s first book.

“I am thrilled to know my father’s life, both private and public, will be brought to the big screen with this team of storytellers,” Ms. Davis said in a statement when the deal was announced. “He and my mother, May Britt, took on the world, choosing love and compassion over hatred and bigotry, and I am a product of that decision.”

Tracey Hillevi Davis was born on July 5, 1961, in Los Angeles. She grew up in Nevada in the region around Lake Tahoe, where her mother moved after her parents divorced. She graduated from California State University, Northridge, in the mid-1980s and married Mr. Garner in 1986. They divorced in 2001. Another marriage, to Jim Cotta, also ended in divorce.

Ms. Davis worked in advertising.

In addition to her mother, May Britt Ringquist, she is survived by two brothers, Mark and Jeff Davis; two children from her first marriage, Sam and Montana Garner; and two children from her second marriage, Greer and Chase Cotta.

The New York Times contributed reporting.


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