Mechanic Celebrates 50 Years In Biloxi

There's very little Dave Morrison doesn't know about a car's engine. Once he looks under a hood, he usually finds an engine's problem. "I guess my mind picks out what's wrong with it," he said, "why it's here to start with."

Morrison is here because on June 11, 1953, he got stationed at Keesler Air Force Base. Fifty years later, the Pennsylvania native walked out of his garage and remembered his first thoughts about being in Biloxi. "No snow," he said with a smile.

A year after Morrison moved here, he was out of the Air Force, and in business for himself. The mechanic has owned Dave's Garage ever since. "It gives you some good feelings that you've repaired things that other people give up on," he said.

These days, Morrison spends most of his time in the office, talking with customers. When he does work on car parts, it's usually in the machine shop, fixing brake shoes. "It's a release," he said. "I can come in here and get away from the rigors of everything. It gives me a little relief. And I like that."

Morrison is about to lose his escape. Biloxi bought most of his land, so it could widen Caillavet Street. The widening project should begin in early 2004.

On Wednesday, construction crews were a block east of Caillavet. They were building curbs along Anglada Street. The city's plan is to turn Anglada into a one way service road. The service road will support business that move onto Caillavet Street, once the widening project is done.