Darby was born in Chicago on Feb. 26, 1932. He attended parochial and public schools. After graduating from Englewood High School, h was drafted into the military and wound up in the Navy. He served four years in the U.S. Navy as a Communications Technician Second Class, much of the time on the U.S.S. Midway, an aircraft carrier. He used the G.I Bill to go to several colleges, and finally graduated from Roosevelt University in 1963. Darby went on to get a Master’s Degree at Illinois Institute of Technology. He was a high school teacher in the public schools from 1963 to 1992, teaching English, Spanish, French, Typing, Art and Mathematics. Darby founded the Chicago Chapter of GLBVA ( now AVER ) in 1991. He served on the National Board as Newsletter Editor, Secretary, Vice-President and President.