Horace Ross Baker, Jr., a resident of the Wake Robin continuing care community in Shelburne, VT, died on Monday morning, September 13, 2021 from respiratory failure due to coronavirus pneumonia. He was 97 years old. His fearless spirit, his love of adventure, his sense of humor, his penchant for telling a good story, his sense of decency, duty and loyalty, as well as love and dedication to his children who were the cornerstones of his union with his wife, Laurie, who predeceased him in 2019. Horace was a man of deep conscience and conviction who believed in community and loved his country. He modeled a work ethic of sacrifice, discipline and commitment. He was generous and generous. He loved being on the water and took great pleasure in taking trips with his friends to Massachusetts Bay and New Hampshire’s Lake Winnipesaukee in his Grady White choker and later in his Century. He was renowned and admired for his willingness to take anyone water skiing at any time. He enjoyed bass fishing for many years on Spednic and Mooselookmeguntic Lakes in Maine with his friend and colleague, the late Rod Hunsaker, and their guide, John Gaskins of Pennsylvania. Horace was born in Akron, Ohio on March 8, 1924, the son of Horace Ross Baker and Helen Baldwin Baker. It was an Eagle Scout. He attended Buchtel High School, Harvard College and Harvard Law School. The service during World War II interrupted his studies. Horace rose to the rank of Technical Sergeant, serving from 1943 to 1946 in the Army’s 97th Infantry Division, Section G-2 in the European theater of operations, known as Patton’s Army. He was in Czechoslovakia on victory day. He was then reassigned to the Pacific theater of operations, where he joined the occupation force in Japan. Horace graduated with Distinction from Harvard in 1947, Class Member of 1945. Harvard Law School followed, from which he graduated in 1951. He was also a graduate of the Advanced Management Program at Harvard Business School in 1962 and the Aspen Institute for Humanistic Studies. in 1973. Horace and Phyllis Laurence Green of Brookline, Mass. married on December 18, 1948. In 1955 they moved to Hingham, Massachusetts, where they lived for 44 years until 1999. He was committed and deeply involved in public service as a member of several city committees, including the Hingham Planning Board and, from 1967 to 1975, as a member and chairman of the Board of Buildings and Zoning Appeals. For many years he was a member and chairman of the Harvard Club of Hingham and a member and chairman of its Schools and Scholarship Committee, and a director of the former Hingham Cooperative Bank. He was a member of the Massachusetts Advisory Board to the United States Civil Rights Commission from 1960-63. From 1964-69 he was successively a member, vice-chairman and chairman of the legislative committee of the Health Insurance Association of America. In 1951 he was called to the Massachusetts Bar and in the same year joined the legal department of John Hancock Mutual Life Insurance Company, where he spent his legal career, rising through the ranks and building a reputation among its members. colleagues and throughout his life. the insurance industry for its honesty and integrity. A resolution from John Hancock’s board of directors, presented to Horace upon his retirement, stated, in part: “He has had a distinguished career as a lawyer, executive, valued advisor, citizen and friend. He has chaired many industry groups, serving with characteristic patience. , fairness and intelligence, earning the respect and admiration of regulators and colleagues, as evidenced by his election as President of the Legal Section of the American Life Insurance Association in 1975. Throughout his career , he has demonstrated a remarkable ability to reach consensus among interests. His younger associates have always known him as a willing listener, friend and mentor. Its characteristics were integrity, courage, compassion and self-discipline. “After 36 years with John Hancock, Horace retired in 1987 as Executive Vice President and General Counsel. In 1999, he and Laurie fulfilled a multi-year dream by moving into a home they designed and built at Piper’s Point on the shores of Lake Winnipesaukee in Alton, New Hampshire. They lived there happily until 2008, when they moved to Wake Robin in Shelburne, VT. His 71-year-old wife, Laurie, died before He is survived by his children: Robert C. Baker and his wife, Robin of Medina, OH, their grandchildren, Lainey and Logan and their mother, Misha Hanna, and Paul Hanna and his son, William; Warren Baker and Sharon M Coleman of Burlington, VT and their daughter, Amelia Coleman, husband, Nate Bechtel and son, Bowie of Colchester, VT; David and April Baker of Platteville, WI and their son, Nick of Madison, WI; and Emily L. Baker and Shu-Ming Peng of London, England, and their children, Zoe and Quinlan, both of New York. Horace was a eldest of four brothers: Robert B. Baker and his wife, Leila, of Bath, OH; David B. Baker and his wife, Ursula, of Akron, OH; and the late Michael D. Baker and his wife, Susan. He also leaves behind his brothers-in-law and sisters-in-law, Ariel Tose of Essex Junction, VT; Galen Green and his wife, Leslie of Manomet, MA; and Winslow Green of Bolton, MA. Horace is also survived by many nieces and nephews, in whom he took great pleasure and they in him. We say goodbye to our loving father knowing that after years of hard work and diligence his spirit dwells in a place where it finds solace and rest after a long life lived to the fullest. Horace was a man of honor, embodied by his namesake, Quintus Horatius Flaccus (December 8, 65 BC Funeral arrangements are the responsibility of Stephen C. Gregory and Son Cremation Service of South Burlington, VT. A Circle of Remembrance will be held at Wake Robin on a date to be announced A celebration of Horace’s life will precede a private burial at the family plot of Mt. Auburn Cemetery in Cambridge, Mass in the spring of 2022. In honor of a pledge that ‘Horace especially appreciated, you can donate on his behalf to The Loon Preservation Committee, PO Box 604, 183 Lee’s Mill Road, Moultonborough, NH 03254, or at https://loon.org/donations.
Published by Akron Beacon Journal on September 26, 2021.