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Missoula Developmental Service Corporation
1005 Marshall Street
Missoula, MT 59801
(406) 728-5484

Derek Pruyn was a one-of-a-kind guy. His big blue eyes and the smile he wore on a daily basis could light up a room. Derek may not have been able to tell us the things that crossed his mind, but his facial expressions gave it all away. Full of jokes, happiness, love and appreciation, Derek lived each of his days to the fullest and touched everyone around him.

Derek Pruyn
November 10, 1983 - July 8, 2014

Derek was an avid Griz fan, loved chocolate, being outside and loved being in social atmospheres.  Going to the Griz games and the Top Hat were some of his favorite places to hang out,especially if that meant getting his picture taken with the team’s cheerleaders.

Derek has left an impression on everyone’s life, and in their hearts, often bringing cheer to the darkest part of anyone’s day.   He could turn your attitude around just by coming into the same room with you and offering his big smile; simply by hearing your voice.  From the point of assisting Derek to get out of bed to his agreeing to take his medications and eating, Derek never made it easy for staff members he clearly adored.  It was his game to play!  Always keeping them on their toes by flexing his muscles, pursing his lips together so he didn’t have to get his meds, or spitting his water out, Derek made sure to make every step of his support exciting.  After some psychological tussling, he would always cooperate, and let us think we had won the game-- but his laugh revealed the true champion of the game.

Derek enjoyed joking around with his seven other housemates and always being a part of whatever they were doing.  His housemates were kind and always helped him, especially by pushing his wheelchair, as together they enjoyed a stroll around the neighborhood.

Through the great, the good and the bad days, Derek managed to smile through it all.  As his body slowed, his smile only shined more.  Derek may not be with us anymore, but he will forever be carried in our hearts.   Thank you, Derek, for brightening each and every day.  You are certainly missed!

In Celebration of Derek Pruyn                                                  Produced by Stephanie Phillips