Davy Jones: a food safety believer

Michele Samarya-Timm, one of our Jersey food safety friends, writes about another side of Davy Jones, who passed away last night at the age of 66.

I had just submitted my Master’s Degree thesis…A Study of Foodhandler Education Programs Offered by Local Health Departments in New Jersey. The paper was a long time coming, and I decided to celebrate at Walt Disney World.

While walking around Epcot with a graduation cap on my head, I turned a corner and came face-to-face with Davy Jones. Not an audio-animatronics replica, but the real Davy Jones of the Monkees. He asked me about my obviously impending degree, and became keenly interested in food safety as I discussed my research. We walked alone and uninterrupted for about 20 minutes as he peppered me with intelligent questions about handwashing, time and temperature controls, and the role of public health. That impressed me more than anything he had ever done on TV.

His concert that night was kitschy, full of 1960’s and Brady Bunch references. And a nod to “the girl graduating next week.”

I was saddened to hear of his death. At least we had time for a bit of conversation.

Not a trace of doubt in my mind…Davy Jones was a food safety believer. Too bad it’s a side the rest of his fans never got to see.