Jesse Clyde Davis, 79, a retired lieutenant colonel in the Army Judge Advocate General's Corps who became a commissioner of the U.S. Court of Military Appeals, died of arteriosclerosis June 25 at the Manor Care nursing home in Arlington.

Col. Davis, who was born in Altoona, Pa., graduated from the University of Delaware and earned a law degree at the University of Wisconsin. He practiced law in Altoona until World War II, when he was called to active duty in the Army as a member of the Pennsylvania National Guard.

During the war, he served in the infantry in the South Pacific and the Philippines. After the war, he practiced law in Altoona for two years and then went back in the Army as an officer in the Judge Advocate General's Corps. He served in Korea during the conflict there and was stationed at the Pentagon when he retired in 1957. His military decorations included the Bronze Star.

In 1958, Col. Davis became a commissioner of the U.S. Court of Military Apeals and continued that work until he retired in 1972.

An Arlington resident, he was a former elder and trustee of the First Presbyterian Church there and was active in the Boy Scouts. He was a member of the Retired Officers Association, the National Association of Retired Federal Employees and the American Association of Retired Persons.

Survivors include his wife, Hilda Ruth Stouffer Davis of Arlington; two sons, Jesse Clyde II of Charlottesville, Va., and Lawrence C. of Poughkeepsie, N.Y.; three brothers, Amos of Altoona, Paul of Buckingham, Pa., and Robert of Newark, Del., and four sisters, Eleanor Wolff of Tyrone, Pa., Margaret Bushnell of Altoona, Agnes Lewis of Miami, Fla., and Jane Patterson of Bedford, Pa.