Herbert Roger Baker
Herbert Roger Baker
  • November 12, 1928 - December 5, 2017
  • Garland, Texas

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Herbert Roger "Pops" Baker was born November 12, 1928 in Kermit, Texas and passed away December 5, 2017 in Richardson, Texas. His life was lived through determination, fierce grit, and steadfast principle. These traits served him well and allowed him to rise from an agrarian life in rural North Texas to a fulfilling and successful one in Dallas. Herbert proudly served his country in World War II as a member of the 95th Squadron of the Marine Air Corps. After leaving the Marine Corps in 1947, he enrolled in and graduated from East Texas State Teacher's College in 1949. He would later return to earn a Master's Degree from the same institution in 1967.
During his first stint at East Texas he met the love of his life and partner, Carole Elaine Harwell Baker. The couple wed and relocated to Dallas, Texas in 1950 before eventually settling in Garland. They had three children: Cynthia, Judith, and Steven. Herbert and Elaine lived a full life together engaged in civic activities and traveling the Western Hemisphere. At the time of Elaine's death in 2015, they had been married 65 years. The depth of Herbert's love for Elaine was, sadly, best demonstrated by his nearly 24-hour devotion to her care during her battle with Alzheimer's disease.
Herbert enriched the lives of hundreds of thousands of Dallas' children through his work as a teacher, counselor, and administrator in Dallas ISD. He devoted over 50 years to DISD and was instrumental in implementing the desegregation of the Dallas schools in 1970. As a self-made man, he was a staunch advocate for equity of education as a vehicle for societal growth.
A believer in Our Lord Jesus Christ, Herbert was a member of the Episcopal Church of the Ascension in Dallas. He is survived by: daughter Cynthia Lanning and husband Lynn, daughter Judith Ayers and husband John, son Steven Roger Baker and wife Julie; grandchildren Herbert Anderson Crawford and wife Alicia, Todd Vice and wife Amy, J.B. Ayers and wife Rachel, and Steven Blake Baker and wife Courtney; great-grandchildren Tre Crawford, Markie Vice, Joey Vice, Cade Crawford, and Charlotte Ayers; and many adoring family and friends. His life was celebrated at a private family service on Saturday, December 9, 2017.