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William John Baker
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Obituary for William John Baker

A celebration of life will be held for Bill Baker on Saturday, September 30th at 11 a.m. at Macy & Son Funeral Chapel in McMinnville. Private family interment will be held at St. James Cemetery prior to his memorial. Bill died unexpectedly on September 19th in his home of natural causes. He was 57.
Born on May 14, 1960 in McMinnville, Oregon, he was the son of Dr. William J. and Irene Baker. He spent his entire life in McMinnville and graduated from McMinnville High School in 1978.
Before his life was stolen away by schizophrenia in his early ‘20s, Bill was a gifted actor, singer and musician leaving his mark performing in many junior high and high school theater productions. People still talk about his amazing comedic performance in the McMinnville Junior High production of “The Frog Prince” in 1974. He sang and danced his way into the hearts of many all while in a costume that included tights and flippers.
He was a star soloist throughout his high school years in the swing choir, The Twilighters and excelled in speech tournaments throughout the valley. He was even chosen to compete in the state tournament.
He loved music. He was in several garage rock bands singing and playing keyboards with his buddies. He became involved in the Gallery Theater in the early ‘90s and won two Best Actor awards before he was forced to retire due to his mental illness.
Bill was a sweet, gentle, good-natured human being who never complained about anything. He accepted his illness and never questioned why this happened to him. He managed his own medication and dealt with the unpleasant side effects on his own. His family was always more than proud of him for living with and fighting the good fight against such an unfair opponent.
He is survived by his brothers, Tom Baker (Sandy) of Wilsonville, Dave Baker of Tigard, Tim Baker of McMinnville along with his sisters Stephanie Baker of McMinnville and Sheilah Mead of Portland. He is also survived by his nephew, Matt Baker (Gayle) of San Diego and nieces Maggie Mead (Tony) of Berkeley and Sarah Mead (John) of Portland. He was predeceased by his parents.
Contributions can be made in Bill’s name to the Gallery Theater in McMinnville care of Macy and Son. For more information, contact Stephanie Baker at 971-237-5940 or stephanie_baker@comcast.net.

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Previous Events

celebration of life

Saturday

30

Sep

11:00 AM
Macy & Son Funeral Directors

135 NE Evans Street
McMinnville, OR 97128

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