Billy Davis, 88, retired fire captain and resident of Mustang Creek Estates of Allen senior living community, spent 30 years protecting the people of Memphis, Tenn. In 1968, he was one of the many brave men who were called to serve and didn’t come home for two weeks because of the riots which broke out after Martin Luther King Jr. was assassinated. This military veteran who served in the Army and Navy and retired from the Memphis Fire Department in early 1980s survived many life-threatening events on daily basis. He was one of the first firefighters trained to work with hazardous material in the 1970s and was involved in two collisions – one involving another fire truck – while responding to a two-alarm fire. Mustang Creek Estates of Allen and Davis’ son Frank Davis recently made his dream come true by coordinating a unique ride-along experience with the Allen Fire Department. Davis was beyond happy to experience the adrenaline again and share stories with the local firefighters.
“When we told my father what we planned for him, he was so excited he started calling all his friends and family to tell them the good news,” said Frank Davis. “He has always been my hero and to see him getting so fired up for something made me extremely happy. We have always been there for each other, and I am so glad I was able to see how excited he was to join the Allen firefighters for a ride.”
Allen firefighters picked up Davis at the senior living community and took him to the local fire station, where they shared their stories and discussed how the times have changed. Davis, who was married for 59 years, moved to Texas seven years ago to be closer to his son. During his 30 years as a firefighter, he saved countless lives and experienced events many people can’t even imagine. During Davis’ time in Memphis, firefighters didn’t have near the same protection as they do today. While he served in the Memphis Fire Department he didn’t wear a shield on his helmet once, and not because he didn’t want to, but because there was nothing like that back then. Davis remembers using masks from World War II when it got real smoky. But for Davis, being a firefighter meant much more than a job; it was his mission. Many of his colleagues were taking second jobs to make extra money, but for Davis, his time off was reserved for camping and spending time with his family.
“It brought us tremendous joy to give Billy something to look forward to and make his dream come true,” said Angella Horton, executive director of Mustang Creek Estates of Allen. “We do our best to provide our residents with unique experiences, and we are thankful for the Allen Fire Department and their willingness to help us make this happen.”
Mustang Creek Estates, whose mission is to provide seniors with high-quality residential-style assisted living and memory care at an affordable price, has additional locations in Burleson, Frisco and Keller. Recently, Mustang Creek Estates announced construction of its newest senior living community in Sachse. The community is now accepting reservations and expects to open in fall of 2017.