Bill Baker, Korean War POW and advocate for veterans, dies at 82

logo_kwva_2005_720x716_96dpiSpecial to the Current

William E. “Bill” Baker, a Korean War veteran who was held prisoner and became a public speaker and advocate for better treatment of all veterans, died Wednesday in Nemo. He was 82.

A funeral service will be held at 11 a.m. Monday, June 10, at Wiley Funeral Home in Glen Rose. Burial will be in Squaw Creek Cemetery in Rainbow.

Visitation will be from 6 to 8 p.m. Sunday at the funeral home.

Baker was born Aug. 21, 1930, in Philadelphia, Penn., to William and Emma Kellenbenz Baker. He married Mildred J. Kemp, Sept. 11, 1982, in Rainbow.

Bill was a U.S. Army veteran. During the Korean War he was taken prisoner and was held in North Korea prisoner-of-war camps.

Baker¬†worked for Brown & Root on the Comanche Peak Nuclear Power Plant and in Saudi Arabia. He took care of his family and enjoyed woodworking. He was a member of the Korean War Veterans Association and was instrumental in fundraising for Homes For Our Troops and the Texas Military Family Foundation. He was known as “Grandpa Baker” to Fort Hood soldiers.

Bill often spoke to civic groups and especially felt it was important to tell schoolchildren about his experience during the Korean War. He regularly spoke to students in the Glen Rose Independent School District.

Preceding him in death were his parents, son, William Baker, and sister, Kathleen Wickberg.

Survivors are his wife, Mildred J. Baker of Nemo; sons Jim Baker and wife, Donna, of Granbury and Richard Baker of Tolar; daughters Johanna Heppler and husband, Tom, of Nemo, Donna Martino and husband, Douglas ,of Nemo and Michelle Oncay and husband, Jeff, of Palmerton, Penn.; 17 grandchildren; 20 great-grandchildren; and a sister, June Stowell of Florida.

Wiley Funeral Home
Glen Rose, 254-897-2288 

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