Obituary: Bill Baker

Bill Baker, former Texas Baptist pastor and administrator at what is now Buckner International, died Jan. 9 in Hillsboro. He was 96.

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Bill Baker, former Texas Baptist pastor and longtime administrator at what is now Buckner International, died Jan. 9 in Hillsboro. He was 96. He was born in Bolivar, Mo., to W.D. and Wynonna Graves Baker on June 13, 1924. After graduating from high school in Springfield, Mo., he attended the College of Marshall—now East Texas Baptist University—in Marshall. While in college, he met Betty June Jordan, and they were married on July 19, 1944. After earning his associate degree from the College of Marshall, he attended Baylor University. In 1947, the Bakers moved to Fort Worth where he graduated from Texas Christian University. He was pastor of several Texas Baptist churches including Second Baptist Church in Highlands and University Park Baptist Church in San Antonio, and he was associate pastor at First Baptist Church in San Antonio. In 1952, he accepted a position at Bethesda Home in San Antonio, which was a unit of Buckner Benevolences. This was a ministry for unwed mothers and adoption services. While in San Antonio, he earned a Master of Social Work degree from Our Lady of the Lake University. In 1957, he moved to Dallas and was the first social worker at Bucker, where he started the foster home program and mother’s aid program. He also continued his work in adoption, placing more than 3,000 children in homes during his 37-year ministry at Buckner. After he retired in 1990, he volunteered with Meals on Wheels, the American Cancer Society and other causes. He was preceded in death by his wife Betty, son James, and brother Dwight. He is survived by daughter Beverly Baker Drake of Garland; sons Joe Baker of Brenham and John Baker of Hillsboro; brother Truett Baker of Phoenix, Ariz.; seven grandchildren, and four great-grandchildren. The family asks any memorials be made in his memory to Here I Am Orphan Ministries, P.O. Box 831, Brenham, TX 77834 or another charity.

 


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