James Glen Baker
1938 - 2020
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James Glen Baker, J.D. Jim passed away at Menorah Medical Center on April 17th after losing his battle with Covid-19. Born in a suburb of St. Louis in 1938, his family moved to Kansas City, MO, when he was 2 years old. He was a die-hard Mizzou Tiger fan all his life. Graduating from Southwest Highschool in 1956, he spent four years at M.U., three years in the Army, and three years at Harvard Law School. After graduating from Harvard, he lived and worked in Boston for 7 years before joining the law firm of Spencer, Fane, Britt & Browne as a labor law attorney in Kansas City. His success in life and business was as a result of his many attributes such as honesty, kindness, empathy, and generosity. He was known for his perfectly dry sense of humor. Adventures into politics led Jim into the Missouri State Legislature as a representative for 6 years from 1971 - 1977. He then narrowly lost to John Ashcroft for Attorney General. At the pinnacle of his career, he was proud to be recognized as one of the "Best Attorneys in America". He retired in 2004 and began making time for his golfing, fishing, tennis, and boxing buddies. His dog Daisy was also one of his best buddies. Jim was also known by his friends and family to have gourmet cooking abilities, being able to whip up a masterpiece after studying the possible ingredients in the pantry and refrigerator. Pre-deceasing him were his parents, Glen & Sylvia Baker, and his brother Thomas O. Baker. He leaves behind his wife of 31 years, Sharon Baker, his twins Molly and Samuel Baker from his first marriage (to Linda McCaughey), Sam's wife Yuki, and their three kids Kotomi, Akira, and Ume. He also leaves behind his sister-in-law Nancy Baker and his three nieces, Julie Baker, Jennie Baker, and Janice Nolan. He also loved spending time with Sharon's 6 children, 11 grandchildren, and 3 great-grandchildren. In lieu of flowers, please consider donating to causes that Jim was passionate about including Parkinson's Foundation Heartland (because he suffered from it in his final years), Guadalupe Centers, or Ducks Unlimited. There will be a Celebration of Life at a later date this year.

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Published in Kansas City Star on Apr. 26, 2020.
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7 entries
May 4, 2020
I met him at his sister-in-laws, Kelly, home. He had a great sense of humor, and a fun guest at family gtherings. I am sure Sharon wl miss him.
Mary Clark
Friend
May 2, 2020
I first met Jim in the Fall of 1956 at the Phi Gamma Delta Fraternity house at the University of Missouri. After college, we went our separate ways. Around the mid 1960s, I was at MU-OU football game in Norman, OK. It rained the whole game. During halftime, I spotted a tall man in an army issue raincoat standing & looking around. I walked over there, as I was sure it was Jim. We had a good visit among the Okies. In later years, we had a lot of good fishing trips to Canada, along with Dan Bray, another fraternity brother. Jim was a very good person, a good friend & will be sadly missed.
Dr. Taylor
Friend
April 29, 2020
I only met Jim once, but our brief visit made an indelible impression on me. He was articulate, welcoming and full of life. I wish we'd had more time together. I would have loved to have known him better. His wife, Sharon, is my first cousin and I know she and her large family -- all of us -- will miss Jim tremendously. He was one of the good ones. RIP, dear Jim.

Merrill Williams
Ojai, California
April 27, 2020
I had the distinct pleasure of getting to know Jim over the years. I first met Jim when I was representing IAFF Local No. 42 and Jim was representing Kansas City in collective bargaining negotiations. Through this process, an "Adversary" became a great "Friend." He was a man of impeccable character and uncompromising integrity. He will be sorely missed, as will his many and extraordinary contributions.
Louie Wright
April 26, 2020
To Jim's Family; I was saddened to read of Jim's passing. I got to work with him across the bargaining table for a number of years. Jim was a person who I came to trust because of his honesty and integrity. Since his retirement I had tried to keep in contact with him at least as much as possible. I regret that I never made it over to pick him up to go have lunch as I had told him we'd do. Since he was a Mizzou fan at all cost and me being a Jayhawk fan, I remember the many times I'd receive a call from him when there was a game, whether it was football or basketball, asking if we wanted to wager a beer or lunch. He was just a good person. Please accept my condolences and may his spirit live on with you. Emil Ramirez, Director, United Steelworkers District 11
Emil Ramirez
April 26, 2020
So very sad to hear this! I was Jims legislative assistant his first year. He was such a kind man. My condolences to the family
Betsy Chattin
Coworker
April 26, 2020
Jim, my stepfather for 31 years, will be missed immensely. So many wonderful memories. He was a kind gentle giant with a dry wit and great disposition. Always smiling and friendly! And I'll always be grateful for how he treated my mother, me and our family. He was so special! May he rest in peace. Love forever, Laura
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