Veteran Troy Carroll at Capital Senior Living

Veterans Day: Crescent Point resident lights up the room with his humor, positive outlook on life

Capital Senior Living is about family. Our employees are our family. Our residents are our family. Their adult children are our family. It’s that sense of family that makes us different and helps us rise to the top in the senior living industry. While none of us may be related by blood, it’s our passion, our dedication and our loyalty that have bound us since 1990. Whether you are a past, present or future member of our family, we want you to feel like a part of it right now. In the coming weeks, you will meet a few more of the many people who embody our spirit of family. We have already introduced you to an Executive Director, Maintenance Director, Food Services Director and Activities Director. Continue to discover the difference with Capital Senior Living as we introduce you to some of our specials residents.

Meet Troy Carroll

Each resident comes to a senior living community with his or her own stories. While some share hometowns, milestones and common interests, it’s their stories that make them unique and worth celebrating every day of the year. In honor of Veterans Day on Friday, Nov. 11, 2016, we’d like to celebrate one of our veterans from Crescent Point in Cedar Hill, Texas: Troy Carroll.

"I'll be 92 in less than a month, and I’m still not sure how I got here or what I’m doing," Troy jokes, the first of many times his humor presents itself – whether discussing his time in combat or navigating through life afterward.

Born in Alpharetta, Georgia in 1924, Troy was from one of the many families affected by The Great Depression in 1929. "My dad lost his job, so money was tight, but I don’t ever remember feeling like we were sad or poor," he says, sounding a bit nostalgic. "Everyone was in the same boat. And despite the reality of our situation, my grandfather and father always kept their sense of humor. I guess you could say that’s where I got it from."

After graduating from high school, Troy enrolled in North Georgia Military School, now the University of North Georgia, where he was then drafted into the military on his 18th birthday. "I was dumb and happy when I got drafted," he says, laughing at the naiveté. "It was something I felt I owed to my country, so I didn’t put too much thought into it." Troy later added how his father had served in the Navy during World War I as a radio operator, making their service to our country feel like a family tradition, and a commitment to take great pride in.

While he served in the military for three years as a rifleman in the Army Infantry in Normandy and northern France, the lessons he learned have stayed with him his entire life. "I’ve always considered myself a lucky man, and living through World War II is proof of that. After the war, I was much more careful and aware of how precious life was." Rather than focusing on the chaos, wounds and post-traumatic stress often associated with the aftermath of war, Troy describes the feeling of relief and utter shock that he was able to return home alive from the deadliest military conflict in history. “I always said if I ever wrote a book, it would be called ‘God Showed Me Where to Dig,"referring to the military’s tactic of digging foxholes to shield one’s body during combat.

Following the war, Troy felt as if he had a new lease on life. He took his motivation and graduated from college in 1949 with a degree in law, which later turned into a successful career writing legal documents for the federal government. "I was making a lot of money for that time and furthermore felt like one of the luckiest people in the world."

A few years later, his luck proved once again when his sister introduced him to the woman of his dreams, Dottie, who he married in 1953. "I used to tell Dottie she was the one who proposed to me," he says, laughing. "That didn’t always go over well, but it’s how I believe it happened, none the less." Troy portrays his late wife as a sweet woman who always knew what she wanted, and when asked the secret to staying married for 49 years, his tone changes and he gets much more serious. "We had very few arguments, and that’s because I usually agreed with her." Troy pauses. "I’m not saying that to be funny, it’s just true. She was smarter than me and, if I’m being honest, usually right." Together, the couple had two daughters, Durand and Camille. “My first born was so sharp looking, I think everyone thought I was too lucky to have a child that attractive." Sixty-two years later, Troy is now the proud grandfather of three grandchildren and three great grandchildren, whom he speaks of with equal love and pride.  

When Troy’s wife passed away in 2002, his two daughters became like parents to him. While he is now under the devoted care of the professionals at Crescent Point, an Independent Living community in Cedar Hill, Texas, his children still check on and look after him regularly. "Durand takes me out every Friday, and I often use the opportunity to Skype with my grandchildren out of state. Technology is truly incredible."

In his free time, Troy can be found joking with and entertaining the staff at Crescent Point. He jumps at the opportunity to go out to eat with the activities director and his fellow residents but also enjoys spending time in the privacy of his apartment watching the “idiot box,” his nickname for that invention we know as the television.

While Troy still claims to be in the process of figuring out how he got here and what he’s doing, the staff and residents of Crescent Point feel more than grateful to be a part of his journey.

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No matter where you live or how much time you have to dedicate, there are a multitude of ways to honor a veteran. Here are 9 ideas to consider!