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'Step of Faith' leads to new adventure for Vic and Jan Davis

October 27th, 2011 2:38 pm by Staff Report

Vic and Jan Davis are "paying it forward" in a big way.

Eighteen months ago, the Davises who are both in their early 50s, adopted two sisters, Yordanos, 9, and Weynishey, 5, from Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.

Vic is the founder and owner of Vic Davis Construction Company, located in Kingsport. After three years of college, Davis quit to follow his dream of owning and operating his own company. His father, Lee, advised Vic that if he didn’t finish college "I would be digging ditches for the rest of my life." Part of Lee’s prediction came true; Vic still digs ditches, but in a big way.

With the help of his father, Vic bought a local dump truck company in 1981. He started buying equipment one at a time and then, in 1983, he lost two-thirds of his contracts with the closing of the Phipps Bend Nuclear Reactor Project. Vic, however, persevered and, today, his company has 70 employees and contracts throughout Northeast Tennessee and Southwest Virginia.

Even though Vic’s construction company has been successful and enabled the couple to do whatever they wanted with their lives, Jan felt "restless and empty." Her three sons, Tyler, 28, Tanner, 27, and Tory, 25, had all left home. Tyler and Tory work with Vic in the company business, and Tanner works there part-time and also "flips" houses.

As active members in their church, West Colonial Heights Baptist Church, the Davises had been on several mission trips to Third World Countries. About five years ago, the Davises accompanied church members, Ron and Becky Brown, to a traditional Navajo wedding in Arizona. There, Jan met and fell in love with a four-year-old Navajo girl who they were told was being placed in foster care.

Vic and Jan started adoption procedures for the child, but the adoption was not meant to be. Once the first adoption failed, Vic was done but not Jan. "I couldn’t get adoption out of my head. I didn’t quit," she said. She continued researching the adoption process and learned about adopting children in Ethiopia.

Vic was still against the idea. "I asked God to change his (Vic) heart," she said. And God answered her prayer.

When the Davises were ready to send in the final application, they sat down with their three sons and talked. "The boys were stunned but supportive," Jan said. She spent a long time talking to her sons and asked Vic if he had anything to add.

"I was looking for a little support here and, at first, all Vic said, was ‘No, I think you covered it,’" she laughed. After several minutes lapsed, Vic finally looked at his sons and said: "Guys, it’s this simple: When God asks you to do something, you better do it."

Once the couple started the adoption process, it did not take long to be approved. Unbeknownst to them, when they requested two biological sisters, the Davises were moved to top of the list.

Vic and Jan traveled to Ethiopia to accompany Yordanos and Weynishey to their new home in Kingsport. When they first arrived, the sisters could not speak English. Both, however, quickly mastered the language and are now in school.

Naturally, there have been adjustments for all. Vic described this time in his life as the "most adventurous." He added, "This has truly been a walk of faith into the unknown."

Jan admitted the adoption has been "life-changing." A change in which she has no regrets. "Bottom line is, I would hate to get to the end of my life and realize I had missed the boat," she said.

Vic and Jan both agreed to "never be afraid to take a step of faith" because it can change your life forever.

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