Roland James “Baldy” Baker, Jr. age 50, of Winfield, died Saturday, December 8, 2012, in Aultman Hospital at Canton following an apparent heart attack.
Born at Union Hospital on May 30, 1962 he is a son of Gladys Baker of Strasburg, and the late Roland James “Baldy” Baker Sr. At an early age he inherited his father’s nickname and was called “Baldy, Jr.”; as years passed all who knew him simply referred to him as “Baldy”.
A 1980 graduate of Strasburg-Franklin High School and Buckeye Career Center, Baldy began his lifelong passion for auto mechanics as a teenager working for the former Glen’s Service Center at Strasburg. He continued his work as a mechanic though his employment with Red Malcuit, Inc. and more recently has been employed as a mechanic for ODOT District 11 Garage at New Philadelphia.
Those who knew him best knew that Baldy had one true passion in life and it was being behind the wheel of a racing vehicle. No matter what type of vehicle, if it had four wheels, he would drive it. At the age of 17, Baldy began racing at Midvale Speedway and later followed in his father’s racing career by driving on many of the same tracks he had raced on in previous years. From Sandusky, to Mansfield, or Winchester, Indiana, Baldy was most at home on the race track. Throughout his career he was fortunate enough to have won many races and received numerous trophies for his efforts.
His one of a kind sense of humor allowed Baldy to make friends practically anywhere he went. He had an uncanny way of being able to make light of any situation at hand which also lent itself to showing others how to enjoy life and that it is important to have as much fun as possible at all times.
In addition to his mother, Baldy is survived by a son, Brandon (Alyssa) Baker of Sugarcreek; a sister, Bonnie (Jim) Hendershot of Strasburg; his step-children, Tory, Lianna, and Mitchell Aeling; and his mother-in-law, Jane Andreas and her husband, Alvin Lester of Strasburg.
A niece, Sandy (Donald) Himes, two nephews, Jim (Amy) Hendershot, and Doug (Michelle) Hendershot; five great-nieces, a great-nephew, his beloved Black Lab, Coal and many friends complete Baldy’s family.
In addition to his father, Baldy is preceded in death by his wife, Rebecca Andreas Baker, who passed on October 20 of this year and a sister, Brenda Lee Baker.
The family will receive guests on Wednesday, December 12, 2012 from 1:00 – 3:00 PM and 5:00 – 8:00 PM in the Geib Funeral Center at Dover where a toast celebrating his life will be led by family and friends at 8:00 PM. An additional hour of visitation will take place prior to services on Thursday, December 13, 2012 from 10:00 – 11:00 AM in the Dover Funeral Center where Pastor Gary Friends will lead a celebration of Baldy’s life at 11:00 AM.
A reception will immediately follow the service in the Hospitality Room of the Geib Family Center where all are invited to share food and fellowship with the family.
Cremation will follow and a private family committal will take place at a later date.
Those unable to attend are invited to share memories and condolences with the family or light a candle in Baldy's name by visiting his permanent memorial located on the funeral home's website.
Memorial Contributions in Baldy’s memory may be directed to the Roland J. Baker, Jr. Memorial Fund C/O Strasburg Savings Bank, 224 North Bodmer Avenue, Strasburg, OH 44680.