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Hi I'm Derek

I grew up in Southern California playing baseball and surfing. Now I'm married, father of 5, and a firefighter. I'm a Mormon.

About Me

I'm a father of five children, and married for 25 years. I was raised in a multi-cultural home by a Samoan mother and a Lithuanian father. My mother was a member, and my father a non-member. My parents taught me to work hard and always look out for others who can't look out for themselves. This is probably why I'm a firefighter. My wife and I met in college when she was the baseball scorekeeper and I the third baseman. She was a non-member who was always curious about my faith. After a year of dating I baptized her. After another year of dating we married. Her parents are much like mine. In fact, her mother and father are both in their 80's and still working in the family business. I value good times with my family. We like to cook together, eat together, help others together, work together, and play together. There's nothing better than family road trips when all 7 of us, oops 8 counting the dog, are packed into the car traveling down the highway laughing and singing on our to visit grandparents, aunts, uncles and cousins. Nothing better then being together today, and knowing we will be together for eternity.

Why I am a Mormon

I'm a Mormon because to me...it's all true. The more I follow the more true it is to me. The more I live the principles and counsel of the leaders, the more happiness I enjoy. The more I learn to serve, the more I want to do more. These are The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saint principles, and this is what I choose to follow. This is what I teach my family. This is what brings me happiness. The world tells us to look out for ourselves and do what feels good. The Church asks us to serve others as Jesus did. It's perfect. I would have it no other way. The Church is true.

How I live my faith

Sometimes life is busy, filled with things that really don't matter. My faith keeps me focused on things that really do matter. At church I learn how to be a better husband, father, and servant. I draw strength from other members of the church who take the time to prepare lessons in my behalf. Often the lessons address the area in my life I need to improve on. I also appreciate my responsibilities as a church member. Like all the other members, I too have an assignment that allows me to serve others. Currently I serve as a leader in the young single adult organization within the church. As a married man with 5 children, this assignment gives me an opportunity to interact with the younger generation making their way through life's challenges. It's wonderful to see the strength of these young men and women.