Penwell Turner Funeral Home - Shelby, Ohio

Larry J. Baker

Larry J. Baker, age 63, of Miami, FL, and formerly of Shelby died unexpectedly at his home on Saturday afternoon, December 23, 2000.

Larry was born March 9, 1937 in Shelby, the son of the late Glenn E. and Mary Jane (Minges) Baker.

Larry was a 1955 graduate of Shelby High School where he was a two-time All-Ohio football player. Shortly after graduation, he was appointed to the Air Force Academy in Colorado Springs, but he declined the appointment to accept a full four-year football scholarship to Bowling Green State University. While there, he earned All-American honors his junior and senior years. After graduation he was drafted by the Cleveland Browns but ended up in the Canadian Football League where he played two years for the Saskatuwan Rough Riders. Leaving Canadian football, he became a part of the newly formed American Football League where he joined the New York Titans (now known as the Jets). While with the Titans, he earned All-Pro several years. He was considered one of the quickest tackles in the league. He left the Titans after four years due to a knee injury. He then played many years of semi-pro I football for the Cleveland Bulldogs and a Canton area team.

Mr. Baker relocated to Florida about 18 years ago and was an assistant county engineer for Dade County, FL. He was also a computer consultant and was an avid sports fan and golfer.

Larry is survived by two daughters: Wendy and Tammy; a son, Kurt; a step-son, Jimmy; five grandchildren: Allison, Kyle, Ashley, David, and Kelsey; hIs fiance, Marilyn Sholin; three brothers and two sisters-in-law: Dan and Beth Ann Baker, and David Baker, all of Mansfield, and Terry and Phyllis Baker of Pataskala; four sisters and brothers-in-law: Peggy and Dick DeWitt of Columbus; Mary and Jack Coppess, and Sallie and Jim White, all of Johnstown and Bonnie and Ken Carter of Columbus; two uncles and an aunt: Kenneth and Winifred Baker of Plymouth; Cloyd Baker of Shelby, and Evelyn and Robert Moore of Mansfield; and many cousins, nieces and nephews.

Larry was previously married to Pam Ruckman of Akron and Joan Moss of Ravenna.

He was preceded in death by his parents; two children: Kathy and Brian; a brother, Jack; his paternal grandparents: Cloyd and Viola Baker; and maternal grandparents: Joseph and Veronica Minges. Calling hours will be on Thursday from 3 to 5 p.m. and 7 to 9 p.m. at the Turner Funeral Horne where the rosary will be recited at 8:30 p.m. Funeral Mass will be celebrated on Friday at 10:30 a.m. at Most Pure Heart of Mary Catholic Church. Graveside services will be held at a later date after cremation. Memorial contributions may be made to St. Mary’s School or the American Heart Association.

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