Martha Potter Baer February 12, 1921 December 14, 2013 Martha Potter Baer passed away at her home in the Village at Penn State in State College, Pennsylvania on Saturday December 14, 2013. She was 92 years old. At the timeof her death she still maintained many friendships developed through her kindness and love for those she knew. Martha Potter was born in Ellwood City, Pennsylvania on February 12, 1921 to Florence Michaels Potter and Frank Everett Potter. She graduated from Ellwood's Lincoln High School in 1939 and majored in French and Spanish at Oberlin College in Ohio, graduating in February 1943. Martha Potter took summer classes at Penn State University in State College, Pennsylvania to complete her education sooner due to the outbreak of WW II. She met Charles Alvin Baer in high school, and they married on May 29, 1943 at Calvin Presbyterian Church in Ellwood City. Her family and friends saved ration coupons to buy sugar and ingredients for the wedding cake, because WW II rationing limited how much one person could purchase. At the time of her wedding Martha Potter was employed by Eastman Kodak Military Optics Division in Rochester, New York. She worked on quality control inspecting tank prisms for defects. She left work when she had her first child in January 1946. Her son, David Charles Baer was the 1946 New Year's baby born that year in Rochester and, one of the first children of the post-war baby boom. A second child, James Alan Baer, was born in March 1947. Wherever she and her husband lived, Martha Baer would volunteer and serve those in need. During the 1950's she lived in Needham, Massachusetts. The polio epidemic struck many young people and some were confined to iron lung rocking machines that helped them breathe. The machines also encased them and left them without the ability to move. Martha Baer spent many hours feeding and reading to those so afflicted and helping them at a nearby Polio facility After moving to Princeton, New Jersey in the early 1960's Martha Baer served as a volunteer at Princeton Hospital for over 20 years and served with the local Red Cross blood donor drives to local businesses. She was also very active in the American Cancer Society, helping develop a National award-winning project. She was a Life member of the American Association of University Women, and active in the Present Day Club of Princeton, the Women's Club, and Saint Andrews Presbyterian Church. She and her husband lived in Princeton for more than forty years before moving to Frederick Maryland, then to the retirement community in State College, Pennsylvania. Martha Baer traveled with her husband when he served as a volunteer for the International Executive Service Corps for projects in the Philippines. South Korea, Poland, Egypt, and Colombia over a period of 12 years. Martha Baer worked as a volunteer in The Children's hospital in Manizales, Colombia; assisted students from the Ewa Women's University in Seoul, South Korea with their English language skills; and assisted a teacher in a grade school in Koszalin, Poland teaching English. Martha Baer was predeceased by her oldest son, David. She leaves behind her husband of more than 70 years, one son, six grandchildren and three great grandchildren.
Published in Centre Daily Times on Dec. 29, 2013