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Nolan LeRoy Baker

Nolan LeRoy Baker

Oct. 2, 1932 - Oct. 6, 2017

Nolan LeRoy Baker, 85, longtime resident of Kerkhoven, died Friday, October 6th at Agrace HospiceCare in Fitchburg, WI. His funeral will be 3:00 pm, Sunday, October 15th at Kerkhoven Lutheran Church in Kerkhoven with visitation from 1:30 until the time of the service. Burial will be in Hillside Cemetery with military honors. Arrangements are with Harvey Anderson Funeral Home. www.hafh.org.

Nolan was born October 2, 1932, in Hugo, MN, the son of Amil and Blanche (Gilbert) Baker. He attended Frederick High School in Wisconsin and graduated in 1950. He served in the United States Air Force from 1951-1954, having served in the Korean and Vietnam Wars. He was a staff sergeant and flew a Fairchild C-119 Flying Boxcar.

On August 27, 1955, he was united in marriage to Rosella Strelow in Rush City, MN. Following their marriage, they farmed and operated a resort in the Rush City area. In 1958 Nolan's love of automobiles brought them to Kerkhoven where they owned and operated Nolan Baker Ford Sales.

He was active in many civic and professional organizations including the Rush City Farmers Co-op, Kerkhoven City Council, Commercial Club, Willmar Tech College Advisory Committee, Minnesota Auto Dealers Association, Kerkhoven American Legion, Willmar and Sunburg VFWs, Willmar and Kerkhoven Flying Club, Kerkhoven Saddle Club and Master Mason-Sharon Lodge 401.

Nolan enjoyed spending time with his family, working, building projects big and small, boating, flying airplanes, racing cars, planting flowers and keeping up his beautiful yard. He was also a mentor to many young entrepreneurs who valued his experience and advice. In 2009, Nolan's health took a big turn and kidney dialysis became part of his life. He moved into Copperleaf Assisted Living in Willmar, Minnesota while receiving treatment from the Rice Memorial Dialysis Center. He enjoyed frequent visits from his family and friends. In the afternoon hours of Friday, October 6, 2017 at Agrace HospiceCare, Fitchburg, Wisconsin, Nolan peacefully went to be with the Lord surrounded by family.

He will be deeply missed and remembered always by his children: Pamela (Doug) Knutson, David (Sandy) Baker, Thomas (Elaine) Baker, and Diane (Bryan) Pochardt; grandchildren: Shannon (Jim) Hadac, Ryan Knutson, Carmen (Brandon) Escobar, Mikaela (Dan) Sherven, Nicholas (Megan) Baker, Kelsey Baker, Alex Baker, Weston Pochardt, Kiara Pochardt (special friend, Shane Tuchscherer), and Shelby Baker; great-grandchildren: Ellie and Madilyn Hadac, Benjamin Escobar, and Mason Sherven; brothers: Amil (Marian) Baker, Ronald (Jeanne) Baker, and Richard Baker; and special friend, Carol Toutge, many nieces, nephews, and dear friends.

There to greet Nolan in Heaven is his beloved wife; his parents; sisters, June Koester, Bonnie Johnson, and Norma Johnson; brother, Kenneth Baker; and great-granddaughter, Cari Hadac.

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