Adieu, Avi Davis

Avi Davis -- a friend of mine, but far more importantly an unstinting friend of liberty -- passed away Monday morning at UCLA Medical Center in Los Angeles.  In these times, whenever such a person dies, it is extremely unfortunate; when he is taken from us at the young age of 57, it is a tragedy we must all mourn.

Born in Melbourne, Australia, Avi Davis did many extraordinary things, but he is best known to us here in the U.S. as the founder and president of the American Freedom Alliance. There is no clearer description of the principles and goals to which Avi Davis dedicated his life than that organization's mission statement:

The American Freedom Alliance is a non-aligned movement which promotes, defends and upholds Western values and ideals. The Alliance sponsors conferences, publishes opinions, distributes information and creates networking groups to identify threats to Western civilization and to motivate, educate and unite citizens in support of that cause.

Speakers at the AFA's conferences included many of the columnists here at PJ Media, as well as other distinguished friends of freedom from around the world, to discuss such matters as the liberal bias in education and media, the underlying reality of the Green Movement and the shattered Oslo Accords.

Most recently, June 2015, Davis convened a conference  to celebrate the 800th anniversary of the signing of the Magna Carta, featuring talks from Hon. Vaclav Klaus, former president of the Czech Republic; Daniel Hannan, member of the European Parliament for Southwest England; and Rodney Hide, former New Zealand minister and leader of the ACT Party.

Important as that was, there was more to Avi than his leadership of the AFA.  He was a bon vivant, world traveler, enthusiastic reader and writer, lover of the United States, Israel, and the arts, devoted father, and avid biker. Sadly, it was this last hobby that was the immediate  cause of his untimely death.  Almost two weeks ago, while cycling in Los Angeles, he suffered a heart attack.  Doctors induced a coma in order to conduct tests -- his family and friends gathered around in support -- but he was unable to recover.

Avi is survived by two sons, Mati and Amiad, as well as his parents, Betty and Jack, a sister Yvette, and brothers Yonni and Shimmi.

Speaking for all of us at PJ Media, we have lost a great friend and fellow fighter in the cause of freedom.  Avi Davis will be greatly missed and warmly remembered.