CW4 Derek Abbott

February 14, 1982 - February 23, 2024


CW4 Derek Abbott made the ultimate sacrifice while conducting a training mission when his AH-64 Apache crashed near the small city of Booneville, Mississippi on February 23, 2024.

Born on Valentine's Day in 1982, he was a devout Christian that loved his family and loved the Lord. He will always be the "Forever Hero" to all who knew him. He was a professional Aviator, employed with PHI as Captain, Medium IFR Lead Pilot, a distinguished Army National Guard Combat Veteran, an AH-64 Apache Maintenance Test Pilot, a UH-72 Lakota Pilot, a dynamic Soldier, trainer and leader to his brothers-in-arms, a loving husband, father, son, brother, and friend! Derek moved to his heavenly home on February 23, 2024.

Derek was known to his friends and family for his steadfast devotion and love of Christ, his immense love and devotion to his family, his commitment to service in his church, in the military, in his community, and for his country. More than anything he loved spending time with His family. They always came 1st in everything He did. Making sure, above all, they knew they were loved and taken care of.

He loved serving at His church, Crossroads and was a big part of the Emmaus and Chrysalis community. He was an exemplary citizen in the community, living by the example of Jesus Christ and loving everyone He met. He believed in shopping locally and "washing feet" of those he could lend a hand and help. He and His wife of 18 years have 3 wonderful children together. A favorite family pastime was movie nights at home, complete with popcorn, Oreos, pringles and cuddles. He loved to plan date nights with family and friends often. He loved to travel and try new things. He enjoyed planning family vacations to the beach, Nashville, and Arizona. He loved talking to anyone and everyone. He loved flying! He even got his private pilot license so he could fly his Cheroke Six. He loved taking anyone and everyone he could to fly to see the sunsets and sunrises. He wanted them to experience the world like He did and see the beauty of heaven and earth from a different view.

A true adventurer and outdoors-man, He also enjoyed motorcycle riding and hiking, always willfully leading the pack, and planning the route. He loved to be at the ball field with His son, cheering Him and the boys on with Dinger Nation and IAC. He loved spending time with His babies in the front yard playing basketball with His oldest son and grilling for them all too. He absolutely loved being His children's number one fan. He loved sitting back and watching His princess dance, love, and grow. He loved being able to close a new deal and working alongside his best friend and sister-n-law while serving his tenants and home buyers during his time building a portfolio with Southern Life properties and SLP land.

Derek loved being a Soldier. He took being a Soldier to heart. Not only did God create Him to be Brandi's husband and kids' dad, and wonderful son, brother, and friend, but He created Him to be a truly amazing Soldier. His soul always rang true to the Red, White, and Blue. He always took great pride and honor in serving, with stature and great valor in all endeavors.

Derek was a great spiritual leader and mentor. He possessed courage that never wavered under any circumstance. He lived by Faith and shared his testimony with others so they too could experience a life of love and joy in Christ. Leaving an honorable, respectable, full-of-life and love legacy within everyone that knew him. He had the honor of not only being a role model to His children and influencing them to impact their lives. He also helped train young adults on the job with his brothers at PHI and at the Flight Facility in Tupelo. He left a true Godly American Hero.

Derek is survived by his wife, Brandi Abbott; children, Chandler Wood, Breanna Abbott, and Grayson Abbott.