Oklahoma Baptist Homes for Children

 

Pearl Harbor Hero: A Servant's Heart, Soldier's Courage

Allan Davis


Allan and Jewell Davis


What makes a hero?

Webster defines two different types of heroes—a figure renowned for his strength, courage and bravery; and a man celebrated for special achievements and attributes. Allan Davis defined both—a hero to his country and to his community.

Shortly after high school graduation from Carrollton High School, Carrollton, Texas, Allan enlisted in the Army Air Corps in 1940. After completing basic training at Jefferson Barracks, Missouri, Allan was assigned to Hickam Field in Honolulu, Hawaii. He worked as an airplane mechanic and completed ground defense school and was then assigned in October of 1941, as personal driver for Brigadier General Jacob H. Rudolph.

Allan DavisOn December 6, 1941, the soldiers at Hickam Field were given "liberty" for the first time in six weeks. They had been on a general alert due to the tension between the U.S. and Japan. Many of the soldiers celebrated by staying out all night, including Allan.

"I returned to base in the early morning of December 7. I took a shower and was just getting into bed, when the first bombs fell," Allan wrote in a personal memoir. "I looked outside and saw the rising sun emblems on planes coming in at almost rooftop height, low enough to see the pilots in the cockpits."

Allan quickly reported to duty at the Hickam headquarters and was met by the General.

"Allan, take my car and get these pilots to their planes safely," the General ordered. In the midst of tremendous explosions and total chaos, Allan succeeded in escorting the three pilots to the airfield.

"When we arrived, the crew chiefs had the planes ready," Allan wrote. "The first plane took off as I left the field...all three pilots successfully engaged the enemy planes, shooting down several and returning safely.

The General's car that was hitHowever, as the young 20-year-old soldier drove back to Hickam Field, he was targeted and a 20MM shell hit his car, causing him to lose control.  He spent ten days in a military hospital having suffered several injuries, including a laceration to the head which left a permanent scar, a lifelong symbol of a miracle.

Allan was discharged in September of 1945, after receiving several honors for his bravery at Pearl Harbor, including a Purple Heart. Allan was instrumental as he delivered the pilots who downed six Japanese Zeros—the only U.S. retaliation that day.

Having joined the Marine Reserves, Allan’s unit was called to active duty in the Korean War in the fall of 1950. Once again he displayed strength and bravery, as he was one of the few soldiers to survive the Battle of Chosin, where the fighting was fierce and the temperatures plunged as low as 40 degrees below zero. When the War concluded, Allan was awarded another Purple Heart, along with several other awards, medals and citations.

Surviving yet another near-death encounter caused Allan to wonder why his life had been saved. "...The only explanation is that God spared me because he had something else for me to do," Allan told a Tulsa World reporter for a Veteran’s Day article in November of 1996.

Allan didn’t take lightly the miracles that he had been granted. He committed the rest of his life to serving Christ by giving of himself to others.

Dinell Davis Blevins, daughter of Jewell and the late Allan Davis—who passed away in April—described her father as a full-time volunteer. "He was just a servant...he seldom said ‘no’ to anyone who asked him for help," said Dinell. "Volunteering was a natural trait for him."

Allan was a charter member of South Tulsa Baptist Church, where he faithfully served as a children’s Sunday School teacher and deacon. He owned and operated a plumbing and heating business for nearly 40 years and after retiring in 1987, the Davis’ became volunteer missionaries for 17 years, serving in Mexico, Africa, South America and North Korea.

In addition to this, Allan oversaw the building of the Vietnamese Baptist Church, the Day Spring Villa Women’s Shelter, Slavic International Christian College, and the Tulsa Baptist Ministry Center, now named in his honor.

In 2000, Allan and Jewell established a gift annuity with The Baptist Foundation of Oklahoma. In the future, their gift will benefit Falls Creek and Oklahoma Baptist Homes for Children.

*The book, Allan Davis: Profile in Servanthood by John C. Parker will be released in September. Call Bill Raines, Tulsa Association, at 918.743.4545 to purchase your copy.

"…God spared me because He had something else for me to do." - Allan Davis


(As quoted in Tulsa World in November 1996)
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