John Baker

John Baker

Dr. John Martin Baker, 79, of Sylva joined the Lord our God in Heaven on Friday, Oct. 22, 2021.

He was preceded in death by his parents, John Maurice Baker and Martha Ray Martin Baker.

Dr. Baker made Sylva his home 50 years ago following his honorable discharge from the U.S. Army. After 30 years as math professor at Western Carolina University, he retired from academia to build Baker Appraisal Services.

During this time, Dr. Baker was an active member of the Sylva Church of Christ where he led singing, taught classes and often delivered sermons. He is most known for opening his home to both friends and strangers to share a meal, fellowship and the love of Jesus.

Dr. Baker is survived by his wife, Suzanne; his three children, Cayce Baker Bogunia (Justin) of Nashville, Tenn., Tam Baker Stanley (Ed) of Franklin, Tenn., and Lucas Tomlinson Baker (Laura) of Concord, N.C.; and his stepdaughter, Lucy Rountree-Helmken (William) of Asheville, N.C.; grandchildren, Elly Terry Darlington, Jack Ellis Terry, John Mack Stanley, Charles Gray Stanley, Garrett Lee Baker, Audrey Katherine Baker and Brigitte Parks Helmken.

A celebration of life is planned for a future date.

The family asks that in lieu of flowers, donations in his honor be made to the Sylva Church of Christ, 132 Bartlett St., Sylva, NC  28779; for the spreading of God’s message of love, grace and mercy.