OHIO COUNTY, W.Va. (WTRF) — From victimhood to victory.

Motivational speaker and author Derek Clark told his story today to middle and high school students from Belmont County.

Clark is called The Rapping Dad because he shares his message through rap.

He did two performances at Wheeling’s Capitol Theatre, and every 7th through 12th grader from Belmont County had the opportunity to experience Clark’s transformative presentation.

He told of how he was beaten, burned, verbally abused, and abandoned by his parents.

“How you respond to a situation determines your success in life. How you react determines your success in life. And so I used to be very reactionary. I would always tell people even at 18 years old, it’s so embarrassing to say this, but I would say they made me mad. That’s why I hit ’em. They made me mad. When in reality, I wasn’t in control of myself.”

Derek Clark | Rapping Dad

“He’s suffered some unthinkable child abuse, emotional distress, trauma, he was abandoned by his parents at a young young age and he’s overcome. So whenever we can present these stories of hope and resilience and overcoming these challenges to the kids, it’s just awesome.”

Judge Albert Davies | Belmont County Juvenile Court

Clark has written seven books, including “Disable The Label” and “Never Limit Your Life.”

His Rapping Dad videos have garnered more than 250 million social media views.

And he has spoken to audiences around the world.

Today’s event was sponsored by the Friends of Belmont County Juvenile Court and the Belmont County Schools Staying Clean Club.