Dirk Warren Rasmussen, age 43, passed away unexpectedly at his Titusville home Wednesday, February 14, 2018. He now rests in the arms of Jesus. He was a caring person with a “big heart,” and will be dearly missed by his family and those whose lives he touched.
Dirk was born June 26, 1974, at Key West Naval Air Station, to Gene and Terry (Bristow) Rasmussen, both of Satellite Beach, Florida. The second of three sons born to the Rasmussen family, Dirk was raised as an “Army Brat.” His first 20 years of life were spent on military bases around the world as his father completed multiple tours of duty, including Key West NAS, Manheim Army Base in Germany, Hunter Army Air Field in Savannah, Georgia, and Fort Rich in Anchorage, Alaska. Dirk graduated from Bartlett High School in Anchorage in 1991, before moving to Central Florida with his family after his father retired from the U.S. Army. After living in several locations in Central Florida including Orlando and Cape Canaveral, Dirk settled in Titusville with his family.
Dirk was employed by Courtenay Springs Village in Merritt Island. He started working in the Laundry department, but when the management of Courtenay Springs observed his ability to work with people, and how well he related to the Courtenay Springs residents, they offered him the position of Personal Caregiver in the Assisted Living facility. He loved to take care of others, and for the next three years, poured his heart and soul into his role of caregiver. When his mother Terry had a stroke in 2004, he brought his skills home to be Terry’s full-time caregiver for the next six years. After his mother passed away in 2010, Dirk’s Aunt Sue Rasmussen, who was also home-bound and needed full-time care, moved in with Dirk’s family so he could then be her primary caregiver. He continued to care for his Aunt Sue after she moved to a nursing home in late 2017 because she needed full-time medical care. Dirk’s Aunt Sue then passed away on February 4, 2018, just ten days before Dirk.
Besides his ability to selflessly care for others, Dirk was a born story-teller who entertained his classmates in grade school with creative, interesting stories he had invented. He had a gift for communicating: he never met a stranger, and people would walk away from Dirk knowing they had made a true friend. He is described as a “Teddy Bear” who didn’t know how to be mad at anyone, and has said he “felt more alive” when helping other people. He was known for always putting everyone he met before himself, and lived a life of service to others.
Dirk was an active member of Our Saviour Catholic Church in Cocoa Beach, where he served in the Social Justice and Right to Life Ministries. He was a passionate advocate for the respect for all life, and attended events protesting the death penalty and in favor of the right to life, including Pro-Life Marches. Dirk’s interests included gaming long-distance with his nephew, Skylar, building intricate models (including Lego Star Wars models with thousands of pieces), collecting and watching a variety of movies, especially Marvel/D.C. comic-based films and the Harry Potter series.
Dirk is survived by his father, Gene Rasmussen, his two brothers Robert Rasmussen and Paul Rasmussen, his nephew Skylar Rasmussen and his Uncle Pete Rasmussen. The funeral mass will be on Tuesday, February 20 at 10:30 a.m. at Our Saviour Catholic Church in Cocoa Beach.