Councilmember McCalister and Detroit ACE seek artist to paint D2 mural honoring district residents and firefighters

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City Councilmember Roy McCalister is partnering with Detroit ACE on an open call for an artist to paint a special mural honoring victims of COVID-19 who lived District 2, especially Captain Franklin D. Williams, Jr. who served the district from Engine 44, Ladder 18, Chief 8 at 35 West Seven Mile Rd.

The mural is part of the Detroit Memorial Celebration that saw an event in each City Council district and the Memorial Drive Around Belle Isle. At the District 2 celebration at Engine 44, Capt. Williams’s family was greeted with gifts and the announcement of the Capt. Frank D. Williams Scholarship donated by the Arab American and Chaldean Council.

This call comes a day after what would have been Capt. Williams’ 58th birthday. He died of COVID-19 on April 8 and is survived by his wife, Shanita Williams and his children Carolyn, Ashley, Franklin III, Andre, Dorian, Georgia, and Jordyn and his father, Franklin D Williams Sr.

Capt. Williams joined the Detroit Fire Department in 1988 to serve the city where he was born and raised.  Detroit Fire Department Chief of Department Robert Distelrath said Capt. Williams “was an inspiration to everyone around him, went above and beyond to get the job done and had a positive impact on the men and women he served with and mentored.”

Capt. Williams also was a diehard Lions fan who tailgated at and attended every home game. He also coached football for the Police Athletic League, the Eastside Cowboys and the Detroit Dragons.

“We would like to thank everyone in District 2 who volunteered to come together to paint the mural in recognition of the people of District 2 who have lost their lives to the coronavirus” said Councilmember McCalister.

He also thanked the Arab American Chaldean Council for allowing the mural to be painted on their building next to the fire station. And he thanked students from the U of D Mercy School of Architecture and Renaissance and U of D Jesuit high schools because they will help paint the wall. The Detroit Fine Arts Breakfast Club will guide the project.

The selected artist will receive a $1,000 commission. Home Depot is donating all paint and supplies in honor of Capt. Williams.

To apply for the mural, artists must send an email to [email protected] with their name, address, phone number and the following:

  • A statement about how much experience he or she has painting outdoor murals.
  • A statement about how much experience he or she has working with students.
  • A sketch of the concept for the mural.

The deadline to apply is Friday, September 25, 2020.

For questions, contact Rochelle Riley at [email protected].