Melvin E. Baker, 79, of Cambridge and formerly of Bethel, passed away peacefully surrounded by family on October 7, 2012 at home.
Melvin Eugene Baker “Mel” was born Nov. 17, 1932 in Bethel Township, Minnesota to Eugene and Alice (Sjostrom) Baker. He grew up in the Cedar area and enlisted and served in the US Army during the Korean War. On March 3, 1956 Melvin was united in marriage to Shirley Johnson. He worked as a machinist for various companies until he founded M&S Specialties in 1971. He owned and operated this company until 1997. In the meantime his secret passion was his BBQ Sauce and after retirement he pursued this and got Grandpa Mel’s Old Fashion BBQ Sauce branded and labeled.
He loved to hunt, fish, golf, play cribbage and do yard-work. He also loved spending time with grandchildren and great-grandchildren. Melvin wouldn’t miss a single opportunity to cheer on grandkids and great-grandkids at their sporting activities. He was also very active at West Bethel United Methodist Church serving as chairman of the board along with numerous other church activities.
Melvin will be lovingly remembered by his three children, Susan Baker (Jim) of Cedar, Sharon Bartnick of Cambridge, and David (Pam) Baker of Baudette; two grandchildren, Johnnie (Amanda) Bartnick of Cambridge, and Tami (Jeff) Weinman of Blaine; two great-grandsons, Blake and Carter Bartnick; brother, Clarence (Terry) Baker of Princeton and by many other relatives and friends. Besides his parents he was preceded in death by his wife Shirley.
Funeral services will be held at 11 a.m. Thursday, Oct. 11 at Strike Funeral Home – Cambridge Chapel with Rev. James McChesney officiating. A visitation will be held one hour prior to the service on Thursday and also from 4 to 8 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 10 also at Strike Funeral Home – Cambridge Chapel. Pallbearers will be Larry Baker, LeRoy Baker, Ken Henrikson, Sean Parker, Brad Strandin and Jerry Vanderwerff. Interment will be in Oak Leaf Cemetery in East Bethel with Military Honors provided by the Isanti VFW Post.