Local parents set all four kids on path to success

Daryl and DaNina Napper have put their kids on the path to success.

Local parents set all four kids on path to success
December 29
14:42 2021

Daryl and DaNina Napper met at Winston-Salem State University 30 years ago. That romance blossomed into a now 26-year marriage and four beautiful kids. Over the years, the couple has led their children through high school sports and academics to now having three of the four becoming college graduates, with one two years away from his degree.

Daryl Jr. is a Carver High School graduate who earned a football scholarship to Johnson C. Smith University, where he graduated summa cum laude. De’Quan also graduated from Carver and attended Elizabeth City State University and played football and is a graduate as well. Their only daughter Destiny played basketball for Atkins before graduating from North Carolina Central University. Their youngest son Daniel is currently attending Fayetteville State University and is on the football team.

Having four children so close in age was a tough task for a young couple. Adding sports on top of their academic obligations was no cake walk either.

“It was definitely a balancing act,” said Mrs. Napper.  

“In all honesty, what we did was every day they came home before they went to Pop Warner practice,” said Mr. Napper. “My wife, she was the academian, so she would shut the house down for about an hour as far as academics are concerned.”

Balancing everyone’s schedule, on top of their work and relationship duties, was another area the Nappers had to focus on as well.

“Most of the time, what happened was, De’Quan and Daryl would play on the same team pretty much until they kind of aged out,” said Mr. Napper. “When Daryl and De’Quan went to school, Daniel couldn’t play Pop Warner football because we were on the road traveling with them. He missed out on about two years of football as far as Pop Warner football is concerned.”

The Nappers say it was a lot of work to keep their kids away from negative influences because there are distractions around every corner.

“In all honesty, it was a lot of prayer,” Mr. Napper said. “We tried to be totally involved, but we allowed them to experience some stuff and we had such an open family relationship. We had conversations if something was bothering them.  

“We let them know that they could come talk to us and I say to any family, that to build relationships with your kids, it has to start young. Will they understand and comprehend everything you say? No.”

Mr. Napper has been a pastor for 20 years and he and his wife led their home through the teachings of the Bible.  

“They understood that daddy believes what the Bible says,” he said. “As for me and my house, we will serve the Lord, and so they spent a lot of time in the church. Most of the time they would spend time sleeping in the van because I was pastoring in Greensboro at the time.

“When they were very young, they spent a lot of time in Bible study. They spent a lot of time at vacation Bible school with their grandmother, when she was at Emmanuel. Life wasn’t easy for us, but it was a whole lot of prayer time.”

“Even though sports took a major part of our life because they were teenagers by the time I realized that sports was such a major part, because we just jumped in and did what we had to do when we had to do it,” Mrs. Napper added. “They were very involved, and they knew that God came first.  

“They knew they had to read their scriptures and do homework before the athletics came in. They were in the church choir; they were ushers, and they were involved with several other organizations in the church. Many times, we were the first ones to get there and the last ones to leave.”

The Nappers stated they treated their only daughter Destiny the same as the boys as far as discipline and love was concerned, but being the only girl, she was with her mother a lot of the time.

“I kept her with me a lot and I am blessed about that and even to this day, we are extremely close,” said Mrs. Napper. “I would say I probably kept her with me more than the boys, so she was basically treated the same for the most part.

“We just always instilled in them that that’s your sister. If they were wrestling or playing or something, they knew how rough to be and how rough not to be.”

The Nappers don’t feel as though they have done anything special by putting their kids on the best possible path for success.

“We really feel like we didn’t do enough, and we feel like that because we want them to be so successful,” Mr. Napper said about his kids. “They are extremely successful now, but we want them to be so successful and supersede our major expectations for them.”

Both Daryl and DaNina feel one of the major reasons for their kids’ success has been their commitment to the Lord.

“When I stepped into the ministry, my great grandfather Bishop Napper had a bunch of children and raised them in church and he would always say ‘Don’t kill my name, I worked hard for my name,’” said Mr. Napper. “My mother kept that same tradition and raised her four children in church.”

“They understood the importance of God because daddy used to sit on the table and say to them basically, don’t give up on God, because God will never give up on you. I don’t care how tough it gets, God will always be there for us. It’s something I instilled in them very early and we have experienced that, even today.”

Mrs. Napper added, “It’s a mixture of this is what we were supposed to do, and this is what we did. Number one is God, thank you for leading us in doing this, because parenthood is not easy and you don’t get a manual when they come. We were dependent on God so much in raising them, because that’s what it took.”

Mr. and Mrs. Napper admit they had some rough days as a couple, but made it through with help from God.

“I am going to say it’s hard, but it’s simple, prayer,” Mr. Napper said when asked what helped them through the tough times. “A family that prays together, stays together. What people fail to realize is that we didn’t have much.  

“We were just like a normal family that got those things in the mail that said insufficient funds when you write a check. Sometimes our kids lived off of hotdogs, but it was those moments that were difficult that her and I found a way to always draw closer to each other. 

It was moments where you never thought we would make it out of it, but God brought our spirits together and would always carry us.”

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Timothy Ramsey

Timothy Ramsey

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