Archdeacon: Dayton Flyers community rallies around Kyle Davis

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Archdeacon: Dayton Flyers community rallies around Kyle Davis

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Staff Writer
Dayton’s Kyle Davis dribbles to the basket against Wichita State in the NCAA tournament on March 17, 2017, at Bankers Life Fieldhouse in Indianapolis. David Jablonski/Staff

They told him not to come home. They didn’t want him to see it.

“I grew up in that house my whole life,” Kyle Davis said. “My mother has been there her whole life. Some of the family members have been there for 60-plus years, so it was a real mix of emotions to come back and see what had happened.

“Every window in the house was broken out. The attic upstairs had holes in the roof. The upstairs bathroom, a few of the bedrooms, the kitchen, they all are totally gone. The basement was completely totaled. I couldn’t even get down there.

“When it comes to clothes, they lost everything. Their other belongings — TVs, everything — was lost. My basketball memorabilia — my high school news clippings, some of my UD clippings, my high school jersey I had framed — they were all lost, too.

“It was pretty sad to see.”

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The gritty and fearless Dayton Flyers guard from Chicago’s South Side — who in his four seasons at UD was part of a just-graduated class that won a record 102 games and made four straight NCAA Tournaments — was asleep in his Caldwell Street apartment April 4 when word came that the family home had been destroyed by fire.

The place was so special to him. It’s where he learned to play basketball with an uncle on a hoop in the alley. It’s where nine family members — his mom and sister, three great aunts, a great uncle, a cousin and her daughter — all were living when the fire hit.

The place has meant so much to him that he has commemorated the corner where the house stands — 86th and Union — with a likeness of the green street signs tattooed on the inside of his right forearm.

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