Edward Draper Baker, 68, of Ashaway, RI, died on Sunday, October 29 after a valiant 5-year battle with cancer. October was his favorite month, and he was where he wanted to be, at home in the loving arms of his family.
Edward was sustained by his Quaker faith and its tenets of simplicity, peace, honesty and integrity. He sought the Inner Light in every person he met, and his faith helped him through previous bouts with cancer. He was active within the New England Yearly Meeting of Friends, gave generously of his time and talents on numerous committees, served on the board of the Moses Brown School and mentored numerous Friends. His wisdom and guidance were cherished and will be greatly missed.
Edward met Carol Adair Pringle, the love of his life, at a contra dance when she finally had a waltz free. They were married 29 years. Their family includes daughters Sarah of Boston, MA and Hannah of Ashaway, RI, son Andrew and wife Becca Yates of Portland, OR and grandsons Davis and Quinn. Edward loved his family deeply and cherished recent times with his young grandsons. Edward designed their home in Ashaway, and loved baking bread, building furniture, doing finish carpentry on the house, nurturing his large vegetable garden, and quiet mornings reading on the back porch.
The son of Edward and Anne English Baker, Edward grew up in Philadelphia, PA with his sisters Maryanne Redington of Macungie, PA, Janie Mohn of Winchester, VA and Betsy Andreycak of Bel Air, MD. He earned a bachelor’s degree from Juniata College and a master’s degree from Penn State University. He spent summers working in the Absaroka Mountains of Wyoming for the National Outdoor Leadership School (NOLS), and later taught backpacking and rock climbing at North Carolina State University.
Edward loved all things historical, but especially those of New England. His professional life included positions as Farm and Garden Coordinator at Hancock Shaker Village in Hancock, MA, Supervisor of Historic Interpretation at Mystic Seaport Museum, and Executive Director of the New London County Historical Society. Especially important to Edward was his 35-year association with ALHFAM, the Association for Living History, Farm and Agricultural Museums. He served on the Board of Directors, hosted the annual international conference and was an officer of the organization.
In addition to his wife, sisters, children and grandchildren, Edward is lovingly remembered by his twelve nieces and nephews, and a wide network of family and friends.
Edward’s life will be celebrated in a memorial service, in the manner of Friends, on Saturday, November 18 at 4 pm at the Westerly Chorus Hall, 119 High St, Westerly, RI 02891 with reception to follow. In lieu of flowers, please consider a donation in Edward's name to the Westerly Friends Memorial Fund, 57 Elm St, Westerly, RI 02891 or the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, c/o Dr. Jochen Lorch (Thyroid Center / Jochen Lorch in the memo line), 450 Brookline Ave., Dana 2136, Boston MA 02115.