Four years after installing a pool in his backyard for the neighborhood children, 94-year-old retired judge, Keith Davison is still enjoying the sounds of laughter and children playing.Davison decided to put in a pool four years ago after his life had become a little too quiet. Davison lost his wife, Evy, to cancer in 2016 after being married for 66 years.
Her death was understandably difficult for Keith and left an unbearable emptiness in his life.“You just can’t imagine what it’s like. You cry a lot. That’s just the way it is because she’s not here.” – DavisonEven though many people crave serenity and peace in their later years, Davison knew he had had enough.
He decided to put in a 32 ft long, 9ft deep, in-ground pool complete with a diving board. Most of his neighbors thought Davison was joking when they caught wind of the plan.
“This spring when I saw him marking the yard, I told my husband, he’s really going to put a pool in his backyard.” – Jessica Huebner
The neighborhood kids started coming by…just like he knew they would. In a town that didn’t have an outdoor public pool, Davison’s new addition was like a gift to the kids in his neighborhood.
Davison’s story has touched many people in his community.
“It’s him spreading joy throughout our neighborhood for these kids” – Huebner says.
“Now we’re going to be here every day” – Jaime Mundal, a neighborhood mom.
When Davison told his neighbors that he didn’t have any grandchildren, Huebner replied with “You kind of adopted our whole neighborhood of kids, these are your grandkids.”
4 years later, Davison is still enjoying his days poolside listening to the giggles and splashing all around him.
Davison realizes that installing a pool may not be the most sensible thing to do at his age but that’s not why he did it. It may have been a good thing for the neighborhood but it was a great thing for Davison.
“I’m not sitting by myself looking at the walls. Besides, what else would you think of doing where you could have a whole bunch of kids over every afternoon?” – Davison
When the kids go home for the day, Keith has been known to take a dip of his own here and there. His rules for the kids are simple – bring a parent or grandparent while you swim. We are pretty certain the number one rule is to have fun and enjoy life…which is exactly what Davison has been able to do.
The neighbor kids grow up swimming in Keith’s pool.
After four years, many of the kids have grown up right in front of Davison’s eyes. Because of him, the neighbor kids have been able to make lasting memories and friendships while keeping their “adopted grandpa” company.