Bradford Philip Baker, DVM
Last weekend, Brad Baker drank his last beer. He died unexpectedly on Monday at his Pine Creek home, doing something he loved – mowing his three-acre lawn with passion and precision, obsessively alternating the pattern each week.
Those who knew Brad know he was a perfectionist - though most people wouldn’t have suspected that by the look of the outside of his Veterinary practice in Linden. What he performed inside those walls, he did with carefulness and conscientiousness.
Everything he did, he did well. He often credited his fourth-grade teacher at McGhee Elementary School, Mrs. Kent, for taking him under her wing and teaching him to read and excel. He got his sense of adventure from his father, Ron Baker, a Navy pilot who flew jets, landing on aircraft carriers. He inherited his love for all things beautiful and correct from his mother, Barbara Baker. And he acquired his giggle, hardy laugh, and silliness growing up with his sister Ashley Baker Krupa, with whom he shared many inside jokes.
Brad grew up on Water Street in Lock Haven. He was lucky to have many neighborhood friends, playing hide-and-seek, kick-the-can, and even a game of killer dodgeball. Brad loved games. In college at Penn State he spent way too many hours playing backgammon. He played pool and racquetball and tennis. He could turn any task into a game. He was especially good at drinking games. Enough said.
For a while in high school Brad was the “king of the river”, waterskiing and barefooting on the Susquehanna. He became an expert snow skier and worked as Ski Patrol on Brian Head Mountain in Utah for a few years. He was a swimmer and a hiker, completing the triple crown of the mountain hiking races.
Brad met his “soulmate” Taryn Winner Sprague at age 10. Taryn doesn’t remember the meeting, but she does remember her grade-school friend Ashley – and Ashley’s annoying big brother Brad. When Brad asked her for a date in high school, they went out in his boat. He kissed her, and she was in love with him from that day forward. They were high school sweethearts. During and after college they went separate directions and built lives with other people. They found each other again in 2001 and have been together since.
Brad will be remembered for his toys. He leaves behind his boat, his dual sport, his Harley-Davidson, his jeep, his four-wheeler, his Cobra, two cars, and his damn Kubota.
We will remember him for his extraordinary gift for building life-long friendships, his strength, his caring and kindness, his dependability, and his love for us.
Brad’s family plans to host a celebration of his life and his friendships after the Covid-19 restrictions have lifted.
In lieu of flowers or donations, Taryn asks that you raise your glass, tell a story, and make a toast to Brad.
Thoughts and memories can be made at www.yost-gedonfuneralhome.com or Yost-Gedon Facebook Page.
To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Bradford Phillip Baker, DVM, please visit our floral store.