December 30, 2004

(7/22/1922 – 12/24/2004)

Nova Leroy Baker, age 82 of Memphis, Missouri, passed away Friday, December 24, 2004 at his home in Memphis, Missouri.

The son of Harry Lloyd and Omega Agnes (Dalton) Baker, he was born July 22, 1922, five miles west of Greensburg, Missouri.

On June 1, 1948, he was united in marriage to Mary Ouye and she preceded him in death on January 15, 1962 and to this union two daughters and one son were born.

On January 29, 1984 he married Bessie Smith Grosenkemper. He is survived by his wife, Bessie of Memphis, Missouri; two daughters, Charlotte Lamberton and her husband Bill of New York and Nadine Beard and her husband, Bill of Florida; one son, Guy Baker and his wife Dawn of Washington; one step-son, Jerry Grosenkemper and his wife Janice of Memphis, Missouri; two step-daughters, Darlene Dannenhauer and her husband Jack of Memphis, Missouri, Betty Dugger and her husband, Bob of Memphis, Missouri; eight grandchildren, three great grandchildren, seven step-grandchildren, seventeen step-great grandchildren and three step-great-great grandchildren. He is also survived by three sisters, Betty Delorise Johnson, Martha King and her husband Bob, and Dorothy Baker; one brother, Leo Baker and several nieces, nephews, cousins and friends.

He was preceded in death by his parents, three sisters: Violet Parrish, Eva Hernandez, Dora Lee Furgeson; six brothers: James, Roy, Ray, Lloyd, John L. and Ernie Baker.

Nova enlisted in the United States Army in August 1940, during World War II. He served in the 4th Armored Division “Hell on Wheels” and the 90MM Tiger Tanks, during this time he was stationed in North Africa, Bizerta, Breth, Tunsia, Plymouth, England, Normandy, France, Cherbrough, Reins, Paris, Battle of the Buldge, Bastone, Belgium when he received 5 battle stars, Mets, Germany, Stalag – 290-348; Dresoen, Germany, served with General George S. Patton in Austria and was discharged at Camp Chaffee, Arkansas in 1946.

In February 1947, he enlisted in the United States Navy, served during the Korean Conflict and the Vietnam Era, with rank of Mess Management Specialist First Class. He served on a number of naval ships, including the U.S.S. Worcester, U.S.S. Constalation, U.S.S. Hector, U.S.S. Alstead, U.S.S. Cadmus and U.S.S. Forrestal.

He also attended the Golden Gate Southern Baptist Seminary at Berkeley, California and received a certificate of Theology I.

While on the U.S.S. Eaton “The Five and Dime” was in twenty-seven ports on Vietnam cruises, also on the U.S.S. New was in thirty ports in the Far East Red Sea. He was discharged in 1969 and transferred to Fleet Reserve and retired in l978 after 30 years of duty.

For a number of years he was a trainer of racehorses. He was a member of the Baptist Church at Memphis, Missouri and a member of the Fleet Reserve Association.

Nova enjoyed and was proud to drive an antique tractor in the Antique Fair Parade in Memphis, Missouri. He enjoyed the outdoors and deer hunting. He was an avid gardener and loved the times spent visiting with his family and friends.

Funeral Services were held Wednesday, December 29, 2004 at the Hudson-Rimer Funeral Home at Edina, Missouri with Reverend Dan Hite officiating.

Burial was in the Slocum Cemetery west of Greensburg, Missouri with military graveside honors.

An expression of sympathy may be made to Northeast Missouri Hospice. Memorials may be left at or mailed to the Hudson-Rimer Funeral Home, P.O. Box 1, Edina, MO 63537.

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