Mr. Derek Barth
I was born in Flint and have lived in Flushing most of my life. I spent 26 years coaching youth baseball and softball for five schools and numerous summer teams, coaching over 60 teams and 700 boys and girls, ages 6-18. After working at various jobs, I went back to college and received a Master’s Degree in Library Science from Wayne State University. This led to three library jobs at libraries in Flint, Owosso, and Bath.
The pinnacle of my life came near the end of 1998 when I met my wife, Mary. Nine months after our first date, I proposed—on September 11. The following spring we were married and she moved into what had been my house, bringing her dog and five cats to join the dog I had.
A lifelong Catholic, I served as lector, commentator and adult server at my church in Flint as a young adult. Years later, at Mass one Sunday, a choir member invited others to join them. Mary sort of “twisted my arm” telling me I should talk to the director after Mass. I did and for years have gotten so much more out of Mass than before. I learned I can mostly avoid the sour notes when I have good singers all around me. Now my 45-minute commute to AACS includes me singing along with CDs that include several CDs of my favorite choir songs.
For two decades Mary and I loved our lives, highlighted by vacation trips driving around the country seeing minor and major league baseball games. We went to well over 200 different ballparks in 48 states plus two Canadian provinces. We saw over 500 museums, national parks, zoos, historic sites, national landmarks, homes of U.S. presidents, and other attractions on these trips.
Sadly, Mary passed away last fall, so I now live with our three cats—all adopted four years ago from a rescue shelter in Midland. Their names are Wrigley, Clark and Addison.