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  • "Just heard of loss so sorry Emily! You are in my thoughts &..."
    - Rita Cianciola
  • "We met Roy Boy on the set of October Sky. He always brought..."
    - Lisa and Steve Gentry
  • "We will miss him!! Liz Nelson"
  • "We will miss him!! Liz Nelson"
  • "May GOD bless your family."
    - Betty Cotner

BAKER, ROY "BOY" EDWARD - age 85 of Knoxville, passed away Saturday, August 30, 2014. Roy was born May 28, 1929 in the coal mining town of Hazard, KY to parents, Gilbert and Mahalia Baker. It was growing up in Hazard that he picked up the nickname "Roy Boy." He was never able to shake the nickname and it has followed him throughout his life. He was affectionately known as "Roy Boy" by the many friends that loved him so. As a boy, Roy was a Huckleberry Finn and Tom Sawyer all rolled into one. In the small coal mining where he lived, people worked hard and went to bed early. At night, Roy Boy would slip out of a bedroom window just to wake the town by ringing the church bell. He was the epitome of mischief. His father was a coal miner and Roy grew up expecting that he would follow in those footsteps. It didn't take him long to decide he needed to pursue something else. "I worked a half-day in a coal mine where donkeys drug the coal out. I decided that was not the life for me," he said. Roy left the coal mining town where he grew up and continued on to have a career with General Motors in the tool and die industry. An accomplished musician playing piano, guitar, banjo, drums and the bull-fiddle, Roy enjoyed many years as a musician, singer and songwriter. While working for General Motors, he often played musical shows on weekends. The name "Roy Boy" became his stage name. As a movie actor, he played the part of a coal miner in the movie "October Sky," which was partly filmed in Knoxville and Oliver Springs. When he was nine years old, Roy began drawing cartoons and selling them to his classmates in Hazard. A true patriot of America, Roy continued to use his talents drawing pictures that exemplified his patriotic love of God and country. On any given day you could find him sharing his art with friends at fast-food restaurants. He trademark was the patriotic clothing that he designed and wore in support of America. His iconic little red and white striped truck proudly displayed the American flag, and could be seen in parades and events all over East Tennessee. His support for humanitarian projects was recognized and honored in various circles. He was recognized as "Man of the Year in Abstract Arts" for the city of Knoxville in 2007. Roy is survived by his wife Emily E. Baker of Knoxville; sons, Roger Baker and wife Carla of Dayton, Ohio and Ricky Baker and wife Lisa of Boca Raton, Florida; daughters, Brenda Manning and husband Mike and Debbie Baker, both of Dayton, OH; stepchildren, Frank Smith and wife Jerri and Pat Archiball and husband, Jim; sister and brother, Opal Howard and Virgil Baker, both of Knoxville; several grandchildren, great-grandchildren, nieces and nephews; and good friend, Wayne Collins. Roy is preceded by his parents and a brother Earl Baker of Ohio. The family will receive friends 5:00-7:00 PM Thursday, September 4, 2014, at Bridges Funeral Home with the service to follow officiated by Rev. Ronnie Dotson. Private interment will be held at Riverside Cemetery in Hazard Kentucky. Arrangements by Bridges Funeral Home, 5430 Rutledge Pike, 865-523-4999.

Funeral Home
Bridges Funeral Home
5430 Rutledge Pike Knoxville , TN 37924
Published in Knoxville News Sentinel from Sept. 2 to Sept. 3, 2014
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