Kelly Morgan Lekas

So MANY memories, it has been over 32 years, but I still remember summer camp at Richardson Springs, Chi-Alpha at UOP, and the Power Team. I remember he would do his kermit the frog voice and I would try and do Miss Piggy. He would tell me he was my big brother in the Lord and since I was an only child it made me feel like I mattered at I time when I needed it. The teen years at Lakeview Assembly and being a part of where Donnie was ministering truly was a blessing to me. I rejoice in knowing I will see Donnie in heaven. My thoughts and prayers are with his family and close friends. God Bless you all.

Kelly Morgan Lekas

Scott Oliveria

Donnie came up behind me at Harvest Church in Vacaville, and picked me up! I was standing in the lobby and BOOM, I was airborne….he was hugging me on the way out, he was in a hurry and had to leave to catch a plane or something. I didn’t even know Donnie personally, but that all changed!

Julie Seregow Thomas

Donnie was such a big part of my growing up years. With my Dad as a pastor, we had lots of speakers come to our church and home but Donnie was our favorite (shhh ;). Each one in our family considered him a friend, like family. I remember him spinning me on a bar over his head when I was in youth group, and how no matter how well-known he became, he would always talk to you with genuine interest and concern, full of joy, life and the love of Jesus. We loved seeing Donnie and Cindy (and soon your girls when they were so little!). Sometimes Donnie and the Radical Reality team would come over after church to our little house in Walnut Creek. There would always be so much laughter with Donnie. I was remembering when we took him to the ranch in Alamo where he rode my horse. My horse was used to me riding her (when I was a skinny little pre-teen) and when Donnie got on her, she literally dropped to her knees in protest. He made her get up and took her for a ride, all while wearing a bandana across his forehead and shouting wildly about something. 🙂 It’s hard to imagine Donnie not being here anymore. We are praying for you and your family, Cindy. And Brooke, Anna and DJ – you will always have a Dad, he’s just in heaven now. Thank you Cindy and kids for sharing your husband and dad with us all. Thousands and thousands of lives have been changed forever because of his life, and your family. We love you.

Rich Shepherd

I’m just ONE out of the MILLIONS . . .
At the age of 12, I attended a summer camp in Chico, CA called Radical Reality Summer Camp. At that time in my life, there was a lot going on. I didn’t know what the next four years would look like, but at that camp, I experienced God in a real way and I’m so thankful I did because the next four years would be turmoil. My brothers and I would witness physical abuse in a real way, my mom would encounter an addiction with alcohol that would eventually lead to us being adopted by family members at the age of 16, and life as we knew it, changed!
During that period of time (4 years), we would attend a church in Roseville, CA where a guy by the name of Donnie Moore would come very often. He was larger than life. He was the Chaplain of The Oakland A’s, my favorite baseball team of all time, an evangelist who spoke in churches all over, and also a motivation speaker in junior high, high school, and colleges all across America. He and his team, Radical Reality spoke in every state in America except 1. Through the course of 30+ years, over 10 million heard him in those schools. When it came to the camps, over 30,000 students. When it has come to the impact he had on athletes, immeasurable!
When I attended those youth camps throughout the years, it was an escape from the turmoil we faced at home. I never wanted camp to end because I didn’t want to go home. The camp had the best worship, the messages were life altering, and the presence of God was through the roof. At these camps, my faith grew stronger, I built relationships with people, received The Holy Spirit & prayer language, competed in team activities, dealt with hard issues in my life and forgave those who brought pain into my life by their actions, and created memories that I still carry today.
One memory . . . I was so nervous to talk to Donnie. To me, he was again, bigger than life. It wasn’t because he was intimidating . . . he was far from that. At the end of camp, I approached him and asked if he could sign my Bible. To me, Donnie was like an athlete and when you’re a kid, an autograph is of top priority. I remember him taking my Bible and not just signing it, but writing something more. The words read, “The world will try to keep you from this book and this book will keep you from the world.” Your friend, Donnie Moore.
WOW! 24 years later, he was right!
At 16 years old, we were adopted by my uncle and aunt and with the transition of life and such, we didn’t make it to any more camps. For the next two years, I walked away from my faith. Internally, I was struggling with all that was going on. Yet at the same time, I lived with a family who was safe, secure, and sound. They showed my brother and I so much love and support. But the problem that I didn’t fully realize was that I laid my faith down.
At the age of 19, I found myself in a place of despair. Baseball, a game that I played my whole life was over. Couldn’t hack it at the next level. Moved back to Sacramento, got a job at UPS, moved in with my grandparents and just felt stuck. Eventually moved into an apartment in Rancho Cordova with my brother and just existed.
Through a series of events, I find myself going back to the church in Roseville, CA and started playing drums for the youth group. Summer time approaches and my youth pastor, Joe Antekeier invites me to camp to be a counselor. To make a long story short, I go and my life forever changes. God speaks to me, on 3 separate occasions and calls me to the ministry. The next thing you know, I’m in an intern program and on my way to become a youth pastor.
Over the next 10 years, I become a jr high youth pastor, start helping with media, and through that time attend camps with students. Eventually, I become the youth pastor and again, continue attending camps. One year, they asked if I can help with media and I jump in. AND THEN IT HAPPENS . . . Donnie needs to meet with me to go over his notes for a powerpoint that needs to be made.
So I remember driving up to his cabin in a golf cart. There he is, on the porch with his notebook, a pen, old school white out, a Lipton ice tea, and of course what seems like 1 gallon of cologne on. If you know Donnie, you know what I’m talking about.
So I sit with him and he begins to walk the message out. Now, instead of just saying, put this scripture, this quote, and this point on, he proceeds to preach the message out loud. This will come into play later on. So, I sat there, listened, wrote stuff down, and mentally prepared myself. At the end, he actually asks me if he should changed anything. I’m like, “Dude, you’re Donnie Moore, everything you just said is AWESOME!” And make no mistake about it, Donnie knew how to hear from God!
(I did not call him dude. #lol)
I loved going to that cabin anytime he asked.
Fast forward a few years, I am at camp, getting ready for a night service, praying, and the Holy Spirit speaks to me and says transition is coming, and I’m to go work for Donnie. WHOA! I remember telling Vanessa and she is like, I feel it too. So, I tell her, I am not saying a word unless Donnie does. If God can speak to me, God can speak to him and sure enough, after a meal in town, I’m driving with Donnie and he proceeds to inform me that God spoke to him about Vanessa and I. He asked if God was leading us to come and partner with him. And just like that, we’re off to Stockton, CA.
I am working for my hero!
The next years ahead would see us working out in the weight room together, traveling to churches, sitting in the Oakland A’s locker room and spring training facilities, traveling to cities to invade jr high and high schools with a message of “Whatever your mind can conceive, your heart believe, you then can achieve!” Countless nights, sometimes early mornings, you could find us at Denny’s eating eggs, grits, toast, turkey bacon all washed down with whole milk. Those were some of my most cherished times.
On the road, he would ask me to preach messages out loud to him so he could critique me and make me better. He would point to an item on the road and say, “Rich, what do you see?” He was wanting me to use my words in a way that would describe it accurately but with a story. Donnie was a master story teller! At times I would tell him about the hurts I had experienced along the way and he would listen, and listen, and listen! Then, he would flip a switch and encourage me, give me answers, correct me if needed, and always give me an action step. Donnie knew how to disciple. He was genuine about it.
Through those years, I got to read his notes, HANDWRITTEN, and create powerpoint and handouts. A while ago, I had a binder with all the copies I made. Something spilt on it and they were ruined. I was devastated. Those notes where the product of a man who stayed up countless hours praying and writing. Those words were powerful. I loved his notes and how he laid them out, corrected mistakes with white out, used arrows to point towards thoughts, and yes of course, I loved the typos. I loved them because I would then have Cindy, his wife, text me to correct them. Cindy . . . I owe this woman so much! Genuine, so genuine! Cindy is the type of lady that can listen and speak life into any situation with grace and wisdom. She put up with my “everything has a place” on Dropbox and super analytical mind towards everything. She helped me lighten up on some areas in my life but what meant the world to me . . . she loved my wife! She cared for her. She listened to her. She made Vanessa feel important. I’m forever indebted to Cindy Moore!
Over time, God had transitioned us through a couple of spots, but Donnie and I remained in contact. He let me build his website, even with my very limited skills. I still got to make his powerpoint, he still called and preached his message to me. He would also just call to tell me how proud he was of Vanessa and I. There would be times where He’d call and say, “Running arrow (the nickname he gave me years ago), Red Man (Donnie) is very proud of you!” I called him red man because he would have a v-neck on and his big massive chest, result of benching over 500 pounds, was RED!
Did I mention in his 50’s, he’d bench 500 pounds on his birthday? A couple of times, I had to spot him! Me . . . 160 pound boy . . . spot him! I’ll miss that.
Donnie always made me feel special. He called me one of his spiritual sons. He’d call and say “Rich, you’re doing it. You’re faithful to the call of God on your life. You’re preaching God’s Word. You have a beautiful family. I’m so proud of you!”
He would ask me to preach my message for Sunday over the phone to him. He’d give me insight and clarity. He’d also tell me if it stunk! I loved him for that.
I have so many memories that I could go on forever. We just loved Jesus and had a lot of fun.
Donnie . . .
– Attended my wedding and prayed over Vanessa and I.
– Loved my boys and prayed over them.
– Spotted me when I reached 315lb on the bench press.
– Gave DJ and I money to buy gardening bricks from peoples houses in Arizona because Home Depot didn’t have the right ones for them to use on the feats of strength.
– Called me over to the house countless times to fix anything to do with technology.
– Gave me my first bottle of Versace Cologne that I still wear to this day, and always will.
– Let me speak at camp for breakout sessions & Man of God talks.
– Called me and asked me to speak in a main session this year. (Dream of mine)
– 36 Camps together. (Easter & Summer)
– Let me drive from church to church so he could go over his message.
– Christmas lights . . . OH MY!
– Faith & Family Day
– Val’s Burgers
– Countless talks about Kenny & Shirley Foreman
I could go on for days!
Donnie believed in me and went beyond words to show that.
I coach my boys in Baseball because Donnie encouraged me too. He gave me the idea years ago while we were driving to the coliseum. I thought I should let other guys do it so my boys would learn to honor and respect others. He said, “You coach them. Other guys can still do that. But show them that you will be there for them.” I’m so grateful for that advice. It was so awesome to watch Donnie coach DJ with Jim Elliott Baseball. DJ, without a doubt, was a game changer for me. Countless truck rides, fast food meals, laughs for days, and everything in between. Time and life have created miles apart, but when we get on the phone, it’s like nothing changed. LOVE YOU DJ!
When God moved us to San Luis Obispo to become Campus Pastors, Donnie was the first guy I called. It meant the world to me that he celebrated with me over the phone and over the last year, He has called to check up and speak life into me. And yes, we have preached messages to each other.
I will miss those calls . . . his notes . . . his stories. I will miss Donnie Moore.
Donnie . . . I sure will miss you. In the mean time, the cooler will get loaded in the back of my truck with waters, gatorades, and energy drinks for college students and people around San Luis Obispo on a hot sunny day, the cologne, Altoids, and change of clothes will be in the truck at all times, and when I’m driving home late from an event, I’ll stop off at a Denny’s to grab a bite. I got my weight room setup in the garage and when I lift, I’ll think of you.
Thank you . . . for making me feel like the most important ONE . . . out of the MILLIONS!
Love you!
#DonnieMoore #HeavenGainedMyHero

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Ruben Richardson Jr

Hi,My name is Ruben Richardson Jr and I go to Heart of the Bay Christian center in Hayward CA. Every year our youth will take a trip to the Summer Camp. My wife Sabrina has been going for years as a youth leader for our youth. The year that Sabrina and I got engaged, Donnie was a guest speaker at our church PM service. When he arrived into the sanctuary, Sabrina walked over to him and hugged him and introduced me to him. That same night during his sermon, he was ripping phone books in half, rolling frying pans, and ripped a license plate in half. Again during his sermon, he looked at me and walked over and handed the license plate to me and said “Take good care of her”. 😀. Donnie was such a loving guy and he showed love like a father to us. And it is an honor that I was able to get to know him and live in this era where Donnie made a huge impact on the youth generation, parents, schools, Professional Baseball players and the Organization. I know Donnie ran his race and I know he will hear “Well done good and faithful servant”.

________________

To friends and family

Cindy, Brooke, Anna and DJ,
Sabrina and I are continually lifting you up in our prayers. May the Peace and Comfort of God overshadow you all. May His Grace guide you through this season of grief, loss, pain. But may Comfort come upon you. We love you all!

Donna Nelson

My memory of Donnie has nothing to do with the the great minister he was…my memories are late nights playing uno that I would always win :), singing,laughing just being silly and sitting and listening to him read me his newest sermon he just finished writing. One of my favorite memories was during camp one late night after he spoke we spent hours feeding raccoons all the bread and crackers Cindy had in the cabin!!! So many memeories of being apart of bed time prayer time with Cindy and the girls and learning how to one day be a parent myself. I love his family with all my heart… Donnie was more then a great minister he was family to me and I will miss him dearly ❤

Larry Thiel

Relationship: Friend in Farley dorm the year he came to Jesus.

Word on the UOP campus was that Donnie was placed as the Head Resident in our dorm because he would be a good counterweight to the “God Dorm” of Farley Hall. The year before many students had made decisions for Jesus and Donnie as a known wild man would balance this out. Nevertheless, we (this was mainly Paul Schreiner, Jeff Carter and myself) initiated conversations with Donnie about Jesus and he was rather dismissive insisting that he was already “happy.” I recall many conversations in my room or in his Head Resident Suite. (I always tried to talk in my room because when we were in his room he would regularly jump up to play us a record of some sort to see what we thought. Then he would tell the back-story of the artist or the song. More on Donnie and music later)

Donnie’s version of that year was that I prophesized that he would become a Christian. I don’t think it was quite like that. What I recall saying is that he should become a Christian and that when he did he should become and evangelist. Why did I think this?

1. He loved people. Long before Donnie met Jesus we could see that he loved all people. He loved meeting people and connecting with them. I recall going with him to pick our dorm Christmas Tree and while I was loading it up Donnie got into a lengthy conversation about where they got their trees and the history of the Tree Lot. Jesus already had given Donnie a massive heart for people.
2. He loved to talk. Donnie had the gift of gab and especially of story telling. He had a story, joke or anecdote for every situation and was an enthralling personality. Over the years when we would meet up to reconnect he would always insist on meeting in a quiet place because he was worried that people would see him and want to speak with him. Actually the opposite always happened. Donnie would initiate conversations with everyone in the restaurant and could not pay the bill without trying to get to know the server, the busboy or any other random person that walked by.
3 He had courage. One night Donnie saw a guy making the moves on an inebriated young woman. As they went into her dorm room he was worried about her safety. He thought, “How can I get this to stop?” Most of us would have banged on the doors or windows, but Donnie pulled the fire alarm knowing that everyone would have to leave the dorm. But that’s not the end of the story. When the police came, and went inside, Donnie jumped in the patrol car, turned on the siren and drove around the fraternity and sorority circles until he was apprehended. This concern for justice mixed with some ridiculous courage could be redeemed by Jesus and utilized for Gospel purposes.

I share these thoughts because Jesus did not come to destroy life but to give us abundant life. Like the Apostle Paul, Jesus did not change Paul’s personality or neglect his God inspired gifts; Jesus made them all more beautiful and true.

On a humorous note, because Donnie has introduced so many people to Jesus, when Pastors have met me and learned that I knew Donnie, they always assume that Donnie led me to the Lord. Despite my story, I have been introduced as a convert because people cannot fathom that there were Christians before Donnie!

This should be an encouragement to all of us because when we share the Gospel we never know who might come to faith and where God would take them. Donnie certainly outgrew us, but that should give us courage. Andrew was the one who brought Peter to Jesus, and though we rarely hear about Andrew again, Peter made a huge impact on the world. Many of us are Andrews. In Farley dorm, Paul S. befriended Donnie, and Jeff C. spent a number of nights sleeping on Donnie’s floor because Donnie was vulnerable in the first few weeks after his conversion. We all talked with him, spent time together and prayed nightly for him.

Donnie was clear that this was all about Jesus. If we get too fixated on Donnie, we are missing the point. One time he told me that John the Baptist decided to be a “voice” instead of a “name.” Donnie wanted to be a voice for Jesus and not a name. Despite his organization’s name, Donnie was all about pointing people to the true savior because Jesus had radically changed Donnie.

A final note about Cindy: We used to have dances in our dorm lounge and Donnie would always show up at some point and play some of his records. He loved Roy Orbison’s “Pretty Woman,” and at some point he would dedicate that song to some girl in the lounge. After he met Cindy, he played and dedicated that song to her at one of our dances. At the end of the song, Cindy cynically asked, “How many girls have you played that song for?” Donnie was cut to the heart and immediately broke the record in two. He said, “She is right.”

I like this story because it highlights the wisdom of Cindy and the changed nature of Donnie after he met Jesus. Donnie was “all in” once Jesus got ahold of him and we all marveled at God’s goodness. And because Donnie was so well known at UOP and had his finger in so many pies (Football, bartender for the Pacific Club, Residential Life etc.) UOP has literally not been the same since Donnie converted.

The world feels a lot smaller without Donnie. But it is a lot better thanks to him.

________________

To friends and family

Cindy: In reflecting on Donnie, I realize I have a number of additional stories that your kids may have never heard about their father. I was there the year before he met Jesus and some of these stories are simply hilarious and they might enjoy hearing them one day. Mourning is different for each person but if it would ever help for me to meet your kids (I met your son a long time ago but he won’t remember that), I’d love to tell them more about their Dad.

Marijo Phelps

Our little church was praying for this guy to get saved… he did! Then began attending LNC…. He and I were ministering to a family whose little boy had leukemia – the 9 year old got saved and HEALED but then ended up dying from pneumonia when his hospital air conditioner wouldn’t turn off – it rocked both Donnie and me but we hung on to the Lord. I remember Cindy and Donnie’s wedding and what was written on the soles of his shoes as they knelt at the altar (HELP ME) Crazy guy at times – that one. I also remember they were trying and trying to have a baby – the Lord nudged me to give them my bent wood rocker and tell then they would be needing it… I did and heard after going to YWAM they were expecting! I will never forget Donnie’s prophetic word over me when he heard that my husband was filing for divorce – it was right on and fulfilled a bit over 2 years later… He and Cindy will always be very special in my book!
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To friends and family

BIG HUGS!!!

love, camp, encouragement

Donnie was an amazing evangelist and minister. But get him off the stage and out from behind the pulpit and he was one of the most fun loving guys you could ever know. He was always having fun, except during flag football games at UOP then he got a little intense. He was high on life and high on Jesus all the time. I remember being over at his house on Longview avenue with Sean Smith, Jeff Foust and some other guys just hanging out. I told him I was getting married and he stopped, did this slow turn, looked at me and was like “WHAAAATTTT?” I knew he was joking but that was him. A couple of years ago he came to Harvest Church in Elk Grove, he gave me on his big bear hugs and said “I love you bro.” That was the last thing he ever said to me. Thing is I went to UOP to be part of Chi Alpha. I was planning on going to Cal Poly. But if I don’t meet Donnie I don’t go to UOP, I may not have stayed in Stockton and I would not have met my wife in Lodi. Donnie Moore was a major part of my life and I will miss him dearly.
Message:
The thoughts and prayers of my entire family are with you.