Derick lived his life to the absolute fullest. He was the master of his fate and the captain of his soul. After graduating from Hampton High School in 1991, where he participated in the Airforce ROTC, Civil Air Patrol (CAP), Color Guard and Drill Team, he enlisted in the US Army and departed Hampton, VA 3 days after graduation. His career spanned more than 2 decades with post in Fort Bragg, NC, Hawaii, Fort Polk, LA and Fort Drum, NY before retiring at Fort Eustis in 2011. He served 2 tours in Afghanistan, Bosnia and South Korea just to name a few. He was inducted into the Buffalo Soldiers and served in the 3RD Squadron 17TH Cavalry Regiment and deployed in 2003 in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom with the 3rd Stryker Brigade Combat Team. Derick receive numerous commendations including a Meritorious Service Medal, Army Commendation Medal, National Defense Service Medal, Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal, Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal, Humanitarian Service Medal and so many more.
Derick received his A.S. degree in Computer Science Information Systems from Central TX College (2008), his BS in Computer Science Information Systems from Univ. of Maryland Global Campus (UMGC) in 2015 and finally received his MS in Information Technology, Systems Engineering in 2018 from UMGC. After retiring from the US Army in 2011 he went on to build a career in Avionics and Electronic Warfare Systems that spanned more than 12 years. At his death, Derick worked as a Senior Principal Systems Engineer at Northrop Grumman in California.
Derick was an avid rider and had 2 motorcycles (one of which he named The Grey Ghost). He enjoyed road trips with his friends Fred, Ron and Arzola and was planning another to Montana in August. He believed in doing what made him happy everyone else be damned. He spent his last Christmas in Thailand and said it was a trip of a lifetime to check off his bucket list.
Derick leaves to treasure and cherish his memory his parents George and Clarissa Baxter, his older brother George E. Baxter, his twin sister Sonya Brooks (John), his niece Chela Davis, nephews George (BJ) Baxter Jr., Darian Baxter, Jonathan Thomas and a host of aunts, uncles and cousins and his best friend Tahzi Price. We will forever remember your smile, that smirk you’d give, your laughter, your sarcasm and your never ending stories. You will be forever loved and missed beyond measure.
God has truly welcomed you with open arms and has proclaimed well done thy good and faithful servant! You certainly lived a life worth living.
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