Woman honored for life of fitness
June 29, 2011
While most of Fort McPherson was celebrating the post’s history at the Garrison’s color casing ceremony June 17, or the history of the Army at the Army’s 236th birthday celebration the same day, another type of history was being prepared to be celebrated at the Fort McPherson Fitness Center; a woman’s 79 year dedication to fitness.
On Monday, the staff at the fitness center presented Mary Mullins Davis with a certificate and plaque honoring her dedication to staying healthy and in shape. Davis, the oldest patron at the center at age 91, was first introduced to working out at age 12 by a woman who was renting a room at her mother and father’s home. The exercises, push-ups, squats, bends and walking, might have been simple, but they built not only Davis’ body, but also a foundation of a life dedicated to fitness.
“I’ve been doing it so long, it’s just a habit,” Davis said. Like Davis, the habit is still going strong. She works out three times a week, walking on the treadmill for at least 30 minutes, doing sit ups and some weight training. Her dedication spilled over to her Family, many who were in attendance at the presentation and who often accompany her to the gym. R. Moon Mullins, her son and a retired U.S. Marine Corps master sergeant, takes her to the gym and said his mother is an inspiration to others, especially women.
“She’s an inspiration to me, a remarkable woman,” he said. “She’s a motivator for those who feel too old.” That motivation is also there for those younger as well, such as her two grandchildren, Sade Cartwright, a Bank of America bank teller, and Naeem Mullins, a Lockheed Martin contractor. Sade recalled the first time she went to the gym to do sit ups, the struggle she had and how her grandmother was there helping her.
“I couldn’t let grandma show me up,” she said of where she got the motivation to push through the pain and get stronger. “I’d like to see myself like that at 91,” Naeem said, adding she has always been in good health. While many people give up fitness as they age, Naeem said he never saw his grandmother slow down.
“She used to walk me to and from school every day back when she was 65,” he said. “It really shows you have no excuses,” Sade said. “You just need to stop being lazy.” Laziness isn’t an option for Davis, who wants to follow in the footsteps of her mother, Amanda, who lived to 100. Mullins said the workouts definitely help Davis toward that goal. “When she works out, she has better circulation and feels better,” he said, adding the workouts help her combat her allergies as well.
Davis agreed, saying the benefits she feels are keeping her habit alive and well. So while Fort McPherson and Fort Gillem may be going away, Davis won’t be going anywhere, except to the gym.