Christopher Sexton of Chino Valley, Arizona


Christopher Sexton of Chino Valley, Arizona

It’s Saturday morning in Prescott, Arizona, and the sky is a clear, crisp blue. It’s jacket weather, and some of the parents standing at the edge of the playing field stomp their feet on the hard ground to keep warm. In the distance, boys are shouting to each other as they run after a soccer ball. The team in the red and black uniforms are the Dynamites. Christopher Sexton (9) is one of them.

But a soccer field is only one of the many places where you can find Chris. Another place is the library, just a short walk from his family’s house in the small town of Chino Valley. He likes to head straight for the Hardy Boys books; he likes to check out videos too. After his family returned from a trip to an oceanarium in California, he went to the library and checked out a whole stack of books about whales, dolphins, and sharks. He says he wants to be a trainer at the oceanarium when he grows up.

You’ll find Chris at his home, of course—but then again, maybe you won’t! He loves to put on his cartoon turtle hero costume and hide, having all kinds of imaginative adventures. Who knows what might be lurking around the sofa or behind the telephone pole outside?

Christopher can be very determined when he wants to get something done. One summer his parents promised him a new bike if he kept the garden and trees watered. The watering had to be done by hand, and it took a lot of time. But he stuck to it without complaining, and by the end of the summer, he was able to choose his own bike.

You can often find Chris spending time with his family. He likes to wrestle with Dad or help him work on the car. Every so often, his oldest sister, Rebecca (17), takes him to the movies. And sometimes, on Sunday evenings during the summer, you can find him sprawled out on the grass with the rest of the family, reading stories and eating popcorn. And the family reads scriptures together at dinnertime.

You can also find Chris quietly helping others in his classroom at school. “He always goes the extra mile,” says his third-grade teacher. “He enjoys working with the other children who might need a little extra help.”

He helps his classmates with more than just their schoolwork. “He’s very tenderhearted and compassionate,” Mom says. When he was four years old, his friend’s father died, and Chris worried about his friend and asked, “What is he going to do for fathers-and-sons things?” Every year since then, he’s invited his friend to come along with him and Dad to fathers-and-sons activities.

So you’ll find Chris in lots of places. Whether playing with his friends, reading, spending time with his family, or helping someone, he’s probably enjoying what he’s doing. His soccer team isn’t the only thing that’s dynamite!

[photos] Photographed by Rebecca M. Taylor

[photo] Going after the ball

[photo] Riding his bike

[photo] Choosing a book in the library

[photo] Shooting hoops

[photo] The Sexton family