It is with great sadness that the family of John Churchman Baker announces his unexpected passing due to complications from Congestive Heart Failure on Saturday, May 12, 2018. He was 64 years old.
John was born in Minneapolis, Minnesota but his family moved to Atlanta, Georgia when he was an infant. John was a graduate of Cross Keys High School and attended DeKalb Community College. In 1977, he moved to Pensacola, Florida, where he would spend the rest of his life. His first career was managing several drive-in movie theaters, including the Twin Air drive-in. After hurricanes destroyed the theater he managed, he moved on to a lifelong career in the auto parts industry, including Fade Auto Parts, CarQuest, and Advance Auto Parts. John never met a stranger, and you could always find him behind the counter with a friendly smile and helpful attitude.
John loved attending concerts in his younger years, and would proudly tell you that he had seen Elvis Presley and the Beatles live in concert. He was a sports enthusiast, and loved watching his Atlanta Falcons and Atlanta Braves. John also enjoyed being outside in his garden. He truly had a green thumb and could grow just about any kind of plant, but he was most fond of his tomato plants. However, out of all of John’s many hobbies, his most cherished times were those spent with his family. His happiest moments were with his loved ones during holidays and at family gatherings. He always ended the day by telling everyone how much he appreciated it. His gratitude for those he loved was endless.
John will be in his family’s hearts forever, and will be lovingly remembered by his wife of 38 years, Darlene (Helton) Baker, and his daughters, Shannon (Chris) Jones, and Ashleigh (Chris Colbert) Baker. John was idolized by his three grandchildren, Gavin, Aubree, and Nolan. He was also excited about the upcoming birth of his fourth grandchild, a boy, to be born in June 2018. John was preceded in death by his sister, Karin Baker Combs, and his parents, John (“Jack”) Baker and Betty Wade Baker.
A memorial mass will be held at 10:00 AM on Thursday, May 24 at St. John the Evangelist Catholic Church on 303 S. Navy Blvd in Pensacola, Florida. After the memorial, his wife, Darlene, will receive friends at their home. In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made in John’s name to any local homeless shelter or outreach center.