Derrick Bernard Singleton, lovingly known as “Smurf,” was the embodiment of love and loyalty. He was the heart and soul of every room he entered, his laughter a reminder of the sheer joy life has to offer. Born on January 16, 1985, in Gretna, LA, Derrick’s life was the epitome of resilience and tenacity.
Football was Derrick’s passion. His talent in the sport took him to Arizona West Community College, Dakota State University, and eventually to the semi-professional leagues in South Dakota. The football field was his second home, the team his second family. But the love of the game paled in comparison to his love for his family.
To his eight children, Derrick was more than a father; he was their hero, a mentor, and a cheerleader. Derrick left an indelible imprint on their hearts with his unwavering love, his tireless support, and his uncanny ability to make every moment special. His impact extended beyond his immediate family. He was an uncle who radiated warmth, an older brother who always looked out for his siblings, and a steadfast friend who could always be counted on.
His vibrant personality was as unforgettable as his generous spirit. Derrick never failed to extend a helping hand, offer a comforting word, or lend an empathetic ear. His resilient spirit, infectious laughter, and constant love for his mother, family, and friends will forever be remembered.
Derrick’s unwavering faith was a testament to his belief in love, humanity, and the goodness of life. Accepting Christ at the tender age of four, he was baptized at Regular Baptist Church. He later joined Emmanuel Baptist Church, his faith always guiding him through life’s tribulations.
Derrick found love and companionship in his wife, Cassie Long. The pair married on June 3, 2017, in Mitchell, SD. Their union was a testament to their unwavering love for each other and their shared commitment to nurturing their family.
On that somber morning of July 30, 2020, Derrick died from fentanyl. His loss created a vacuum that can never be filled. The echoes of his laughter, the memories of his unyielding love, and the lessons from his generous life continue to be our guiding light.
The life of Derrick Bernard Singleton was a testament to the strength of character, the power of faith, and the endurance of family love. Even in his passing, he remains a beacon of inspiration for all who knew and loved him.