Vern Allan Baker, 60, Luverne, died Thursday, April 6, 2017, at the Sioux Falls VA Medical Center in Sioux Falls, South Dakota.
A memorial visitation was Sunday, April 9, at the Hartquist Funeral Home in Luverne. A private family burial with military honors was in the Eastside Cemetery near Steen.
Vern Baker was born Nov. 27, 1956, to Edward and Verla (Aukes) Baker in Rock Rapids, Iowa. He was raised on the family farm east of Steen and graduated from Hills Beaver Creek High School in 1974. In June of 1974 Vern enlisted into the United States Air Force. He was an area chief and worked as a specialist mechanic in airframe structural repair. Vern was honorably discharged on Feb. 2, 1978, and returned to the family farm which he eventually purchased.
He was married to Susan Boeve from 1978 to 2002. They had four children together. In 1984 Vern changed careers and moved the family to Hills. He worked at Kolman-Athey Manufacturing in Sioux Falls for six years. He then worked for Exhaust Pros in Sioux Falls for over 16 years as an exhaust specialist and manager before a number of health concerns forced him into an early retirement.
Vern loved camping and visiting any place with a river setting. He enjoyed fishing, target shooting, and watching old westerns. He collected die-cast metal cars and tractors.
He is survived by four children, Alyson (Baker) and her husband Dana Olson of Hills, Karen (Baker) and her husband Alex Griffith of Brandon, South Dakota, Wayne Baker of Hills, and Robert Baker and his wife Kerri (Fransman) of Beaver Creek; nine grandchildren, Alexia Boltjes, Adrienne Boltjes, MacKenzie Griffith, Isaac Griffith, Abigayl Olson, Caden Baker, Auston Olson, Maddox Baker, and Kaelyn Baker; four siblings, Warren (Loretta) Baker of Luverne, Gerhart (Marsha) Baker of Tulsa, Oklahoma, Debra (Darrell) Peterson of Pennock, and Bernita (Richard) Hup of Litchfield; and many nieces and nephews.
He was preceded in death by his parents.
Arrangements were with Hartquist Funeral Home of Luverne, www.hartquistfuneral.com.