Merrill K. Davis, 75, former speaker of the Utah House of Representatives, state senator and attorney, died Thursday, April 18, 1991, of natural causes at his Salt Lake home.

He was born June 18, 1915, in Salt Lake City and was a graduate of East High School and the University of Utah Law School.Mr. Davis served in the House from 1946 to 1958, during which time he was speaker, chairman of the Legislative Council, floor leader and Republican Party "whip." He was a state senator from 1955 through 1958.

He was named the "Outstanding Young Man of Utah for 1948" by the Utah Junior Chamber of Commerce. He was a special FBI agent before serving in the U.S. Army Military Intelligence Division during World War II. In 1946 he returned to Salt Lake City to practice law.

Mr. Davis was active for many years in the Republican Party, serving as president of the Young Republican Clubs of Utah, chairman of the Western States Council of Young Republicans. He was a member of The Monument Park 11th Ward, Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, the American Legion and the University Club.

His wife, Salt Lake City Councilwoman Ione McKean Davis, died in 1985.

Funeral arrangements will be announced by Larkin Mortuary.