BAKER, JEAN MARGARET ATTWOOD (1921 ~ 2012)
The following obituary appeared in the Galveston Daily News on March 23, 2012.
Jean Margaret Attwood Baker passed away on Wednesday, March 21, 2012, at the age of 90 at her home in Galveston.
Born on October 22, 1921, in Birmingham, England, to Howard and Hilda Attwood, Jean moved to Galveston with her husband, Andrew Z. Baker in 1954.
Jean Attwood and Lt. Andrew Z. Baker met at a dance during World War II in Wolverhampton, England. The dark-headed lieutenant said, “Hey, Red, how about it?” Jean answered, “I don’t with Yanks.” That statement belied the truth. Andy Baker stole her heart and wedded her on July 14, 1945, in her family’s backyard. After a week’s honeymoon in London, he returned to active duty in France.
In the 1950s, Jean worked as Lawyer Baker’s legal secretary when he opened his Galveston practice. Later, after Hurricane Carla destroyed their home, she was employed by the Galveston Convention and Tourist Bureau. For many years jean edited the church newsletter, volunteered as a Cub Scout den mother, worked in the office of Big Brothers-Big Sisters, delivered Meals on Wheels, and served as a Hospice volunteer. She was an active member of the Pilot Club and served in various roles including President. In 1987, she was nominated for the Rabbi Henry Cohen Humanitarian Award. Jean was an active lifetime member of the Unitarian Universalist Fellowship of Galveston County.
In the 1960s, she starred in several plays at the Galveston Little Theater, including “There’s Always Juliet” and “Pygmalion.” She was an avid reader and a patron of the Rosenberg Library where she took the children weekly. In addition to rasing four children and taking in other young relatives, Jean attended Galveston College where she won an Associate Degree.
Jean and Andy loved to travel. During and after the children were grown, they visited all fifty states and such countries as Mexico, Canada, Germany, all the of countries of the U.K., Australia, New Zealand, Turkey, Italy, France, Scandinavia, and all of Eastern Europe.
She was truly the woman behind the man, always encouraging Andy in his political endeavors. Whether he ran for mayor of Galveston, State Representative, or Judge, she was his number one supporter, the epitome of the supportive wife.
Jean was preceded in death by her parents, her husband of 62 years, Andrew Z. Baker, brother Stanley Attwood, daughter-in-law Jeanne French Baker, special niece Andra Rowland, and foster son Billy Ray Baker. She is survived by children John R. baker of Texas city, Bonnie baker Palmer and husband, Ken, of Dickinson, Susan P. Baker and husband, John E. Hunger, of Galveston, David A. H. Baker and wife Dianna, of Galveston, grandchildren Kellie and Benjamin Baker, Robert baker and wife, Rebecca, Keith Palmer and wife, Kim, Karen Palmer Sinclair and husband, Phillip, Susan Olsen Reyna and husband Ruben, Tara Olsen Hall and husband, Scot, Diandra Baker and husband, Benji Puccetti, Allen Jackson, II, Toby Jackson, and 21 great-grandchildren. Additionally, she is survived by niece, Susan Attwood Chapman, of the U.K. nephew, Peter Attwood, of Australia, special friends Peter and Diane Olsen and other relatives and friends.
A memorial service will be held at 2 p.m., Saturday, March 24, 2012, at the Unitarian Universalist Fellowship of Galveston County, 502 Church Street in Galveston where contributions in lieu of flowers may be made.
Cremation is under the direction of James Crowder Funeral Homes.