Dr. William Adam Derrick Jr.
Dr. Derrick, or "Buck," as he was known, grew up in Spartanburg, S.C., where he met and married Liz, his high school sweetheart, the love of his life.
He graduated from Wofford College and then the Medical University of South Carolina in 1965. He served as a captain in the United States Army and as a flight surgeon in Japan.
He and his young family relocated to Boone, N.C., in 1968, where he was only the fourth doctor practicing in Watauga County at that time. He served as a general practitioner in private practice for eight years, lovingly caring for patients of all ages and with all health issues.
In 1976, he began his term with Appalachian State University as a physician in ASU's Student Health Services, later becoming its director until his retirement in 2001.
Dr. Derrick loved college students and caring for their health needs was more of a joy than a job to him, often remarking as he returned to work that Monday was his favorite day.
During these years, he also served as team physician for many ASU athletic teams, and for 25 years helped his wife teach sign language to ASU students.
Throughout his career with ASU, he was honored as fellow of the American College Health Association, was presented the Charles Bohman Award, which is the highest award bestowed by the Southern College Health Association, was awarded the Plemmons Medallion Award at ASU, which is the highest award in student development, and was also given the highest honor by students, the Alpha Chi Outstanding Service Award.
After Dr. Derrick retired, he was honored by Appalachian State University with emeritus status by the board of trustees.
In addition to his responsibilities at the Student Health Services, for 24 years Dr. Derrick served six terms as the physician to the United States Team for the Deaflympics, caring for deaf athletes all over the world.
Even as a busy physician, Dr. Derrick's heart for his community, and especially deaf and special needs, was evident ,as he frequently volunteered as physician for Special Olympics, gave many free physicals to young athletes in Watauga County as needed, was medical consultant to the Watauga County Center for Exceptional Children, Mountain Care Rest Home, the Cannon Center and Watauga County Health Department.
He was a member of the board of directors of Watauga Opportunities for 25 years, serving two terms as president, and also worked with deaf inmates at the Watauga County Correctional Unit. He also loved serving deaf and special needs members at his home church, Mount Vernon Baptist Church.
Although he had a distinguished career in medicine and service, all who knew him, knew that he cherished his family and his dear, loving wife above all on earth. He loved to travel and brought laughter and fun stories with him wherever he went.
Dr. Derrick was a man of strong faith in his Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, and lived his life in all respects to bring him honor.
Dr. Derrick is survived by his wife, Elizabeth "Liz" King Derrick of the home; two daughters, Angie Cramer and husband, Jim, of Alpharetta, Ga., and Joy Richards and husband, Jeff, of Fishers, Ind.; three sons, Will Derrick and wife, Angie, and Drew Derrick and wife, Tricia, all of Boone, and Joel Marc Derrick and wife, Frances, of Branchville, S.C.; 15 grandchildren, Meeja Richards, Jenna Derrick, Tori Derrick, Tristin Derrick, Kearsten Furtick, Destiny Furtick, Adam Derrick, Alex Derrick, Naval petty officer third class, Tae Richards, Naval petty officer third class, Lee Richards, Jeremiah Derrick, Jedidiah Derrick, Alex Furtick, Nicholas Furtick, and Robbie Furtick; and two sisters, Mary Jane Coxe and husband, Lavon, of Albany, Ore., and Linda Carol Derrick of Boone. He is also survived by a number of nieces and nephews.
He was preceded in death by his father and mother, William Adam Derrick Sr. and Hazel Myrtle Williams Derrick.
Funeral services for Dr. William Adam Derrick Jr. will be conducted Saturday morning, May 3, 2014, at 11 a.m. at Mount Vernon Baptist Church. The body will lie in state at the church from 10 a.m. until 11 a.m. Officiating will be the Rev. Bud Russell and Pastor Greg Heisler. Military graveside rites and burial, provided by American Legion Post 130 and Disabled American Veterans Chapter 90, will follow in Mount Vernon Baptist Church Cemetery.
The family will receive friends Friday evening, May 2, 2014, beginning at 6 p.m. in the Meadowview Room of Mount Vernon Baptist Church.
In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to Mount Vernon Baptist Church or to the Lottie Moon International Missions Fund, in care of Mount Vernon Baptist Church, 3505 Bamboo Road, Boone, NC 28607.
Online condolences may be sent to the Derrick family at http://www.hamptonfuneralnc.com.
Hampton Funeral and Cremation Service is in charge of the arrangements.