Derrick DeWitt Niba was born on October 22, 1984, in Chicago, Illinois and went home to be with the Lord on Thursday December 3, 2009 at Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore, Maryland.
Derrick Niba, affectionately known as Honeyboy or D-Man was a product of Montgomery County Public Schools. He was a part of the Young Entrepreneurs Program, The Explorers, and a member of ‘Brothers’ a mentoring support group for boys at Blair High School.
He graduated from Montgomery Blair High School in Silver Spring, Maryland in June, 2002. He attended Montgomery College in Silver Spring while working at Hollywood Video. During this time Derrick was selected to participate in the “Year Up” program for young IT professionals, which landed him an internship position at AOL headquarters, in Virginia.
Derrick loved Popeye’s chicken, seafood (Jerry’s) and seafood pasta dishes. He liked the lyrical genius of Kanye West, the rhythms of Michael Jackson and the soul of old school music. He liked going to the movies and could watch any movie on his A list multiple times. Derrick enjoyed putting puzzles together, playing video/on-line games, or chatting with friends and his new found addiction was for Fantasy Football.
At first glance or meeting, Derrick appeared to be shy and reserved but if you knew Derrick, you know he was meant to be a comedian. With his wonderful sense of humor and quick wit he found a way to joke about everything even while in crises. He had a way of putting others at ease. His easy going demeanor, gentle smile and infectious laugh could melt the hearts of those around him while in or out of the hospital.
His courage led us to believe that each day is a blessing and an opportunity to create lasting memories. Derrick’s life would seem short, but those who were touched by him can attest that the quality of his life was rich and filled with love despite his bout with Sickle Cell Disease. With Derrick’s passing we are reminded that his life is one to be celebrated. He will forever remain in our hearts. Because of him, we have wonderful memories and cherish having the privilege of sharing his life.
The family holds dear to our hearts, his fiancé, “Nakiyah Coard”, the ‘apple of his eye’ who was his best friend and loving support system throughout their relationship.
Derrick is survived by his loving parents, Caron Niba and Johnson Niba, of Silver Spring and Rockville, Maryland; one brother Elvis Niba (Amabel), Northridge, California; grandmother, Scholastica Ngwa, Cameroon, West Africa; 3 aunts Angela Ngwa (Anthony), Cameroon, West Africa, Marla Douglas (Willard) and Tanine Murdock, of Chicago, Illinois; 2 uncles Glenn Murdock (Joyce), Stone Mountain, Gerogia, and R. Murdock, of Chicago, Illinois; and a host of cousins other relatives and friends, in Maryland, Chicago, Peoria, New York and Columbus, Georgia.