FALKVILLE — Colonel Horace W. “Pony” Baker, U.S. Marine Corps passed away 16 June 2019 in Falkville, Alabama. Pony was born 25 April 1936 in Iowa to William and Velma Clites Baker and raised in the town of Wapello. He attended college at Ole Miss graduating in 1958 and was commissioned in the Marine Corps. He served 30 years in the Marines as an infantry officer conducting combat operations in the Dominican Republic, Vietnam and Cambodia. He retired from the Marine Corps serving as Chief of Staff, II Marine Expeditionary Force at Camp Lejeune, North Carolina.
Following military retirement Pony settled in Sheffield, Alabama -- the home of his wife. He participated in a variety of volunteer activities including Meals on Wheels, high school tutor, adult English tutor, church elder, and pitching coach for women’s softball. He was recognized by Sheffield City Schools for his contributions to high school students and was also selected as the Kiwanis Citizen of the Year. He was a member of First Presbyterian Church and Kiwanis Club of Sheffield. He proudly served as Mayor of the City of Sheffield working diligently to make improvements in civic parks and implementing economic development projects. He was upbeat about the future of the Shoals community and enjoyed sharing ideas with his fellow citizens. He was most devoted to the Second Harvest Outreach ministry at First Presbyterian Church and was honored to lead the ministry for several years.
Colonel Baker was preceded in death by his wife of 50 years, Mary Elizabeth Ross. He is survived by their three children: Colonel Craig Baker, USMC and wife Commander Melinda Baker, USNR of Decatur; Laura and her husband Colonel John Miller, U.S. Army of Midland, Georgia; and Major Bill Baker, USMC and his wife Pam of King, North Carolina. Pony has seven grandchildren: Kimberly and husband Captain Kane Jones, USAF of San Antonio, Texas; Captain Matthew Miller, U.S. Army of Columbus, Georgia; Harrison Baker of McAdenville, North Carolina; Elizabeth Miller of Athens, Georgia; Connor Baker, Katherine Baker and Joey Baker, all from Decatur. Pony has three sisters: Barbara Iiams of La Habra, California; Mary Jo Barrick of Denver, Colorado and Nancy Patterson of Loveland, Colorado.
Visitation will be held at First Presbyterian Church at 11 a.m. in the sanctuary on Thursday, 20 June. The funeral service will be conducted at 1 p.m. with internment to follow in Oakwood Cemetery in Sheffield. Reverend Jaina Glaze will officiate. Morrison Funeral Home of Tuscumbia will be assisting the family.
Pallbearers will be provided by members of First Presbyterian Church and Kiwanis Club of Sheffield. In lieu of flowers, the family suggests donations to Second Harvest, care of First Presbyterian Church of Sheffield. The family would like to thank the staff and caregivers at Morningside in Sheffield, Terraces in Priceville and Summerford Nursing Home in Falkville for the loving care provided to their father.
Please visit morrisonfuneralhomes.com to leave online condolences.