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SING my SONG....

Grover was born on March 7th, 1926 in Buffalo, New York, to his parents, John Adams Baker and Maxine Eldridge Baker. His parents had moved to Miami a year before, but in those days medical services were rather rare in Miami, so they returned to Buffalo for this, the first birth of their family, Grover. They returned to Miami shortly thereafter, so Grover was really a "Miamuh" boy. Later, his brother Douglas and sister Martha were born. Grover attended public schools and soon fell in love with his trombone and later, the bass fiddle, and all the Straight-Ahead Jazz that soon would appear in the U.s. during and after World War II. Music was his life and love, but it was, and is, a tough way to make a living. When Grover graduated from Miami High in 1942 as a drum major, he wanted to go to war with all his buddies, but he was turned down because of his poor eyesight. He joined the Merchant Marine for two years, and then went to the University of Florida, earning a Bachelor's in Business, and serving four years as drum major of the Florida State band, and president of Sigma Phi Epsilon. After his graduation he was called into the Army during the Korean War and played the trombone and bass fiddle at various bases in the U.S. Grover returned to Miami and took over his father's business, a rug company, and married, and had two girls. He began his long relationship with the Rotary Club, and ended up with 67 years of perfect attendance there. He also became very active in SPEBSQSA , the Barbershop Society, sang in a number of quartets, and directed choral groups for all of his life in Orlando with his second wife. Music was indeed his life. After Grover's mother, Maxine, finished raising her three children, she expanded her activities from the American Association of University Women, to Florida politics and ran successfully for the House of Representatives. She wrote the Baker Act in 1971, and it is an unending source of pride to her family for its excellence and frequent utilization, to this day. Finally, in 2001 Grover got together with his old girlfriend, Betty, from his days way back when he was in the Merchant Marine in 1942. The old fire was re -lit and they married October 17th, 2001, and lived a joyfully loving life until his death of Alzheimer's Disease on 21 June 2012. Grover is remembered by his wife, Betty, with deep love and affection; also his sister Martha, his two daughters Anita, and Susan; his granddaughters Sadie, Laura and Elaine; his nephew Matthew; and his daughter-in-law Lynn, with love and devotion. He has given his body to the State of Florida for use in medical research and education. After his cremation his remains will be spread over the waters of the Gulf of Mexico. Please, sing his song.... Yes, please, sing his song.....and share your mementoes and memories of Grover, to Betty Baker, #256, 501 North Orlando Avenue, Suite 313, Winter Park, Florida 32789
Published in the Orlando Sentinel on July 1, 2012
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