Obit Lewis Baker picLewis Edwin Baker, age 95, of Coshocton, (formerly of Freeport) died at 7:45 a.m. Tuesday, Sept. 8, in Windsorwood Place, Coshocton, Ohio.

Born in Dennison, Ohio July 20, 1920, he was a son of the late Edwin Lewis Baker and Bessie Belle Spring Baker.

He was a 1939 graduate of Jewett High School where he was president of his Senior Class and participated in basketball and soccer.

Ed was a World War II Army Air Force Veteran. He entered the service September 26, 1942 and was a member of the 8th Air Force, 388th Bomb Group. He was taken prisoner in France Sept. 7, 1943. He was in prison camp in Krems, Austria Stalag 17B and held until May 1945. His total POW time was twenty months. He was forced to march through Austria three weeks at the end of the war and was discharged October 28, 1945. He was awarded the Air Medal; Purple Heart; European World War II Victory; Presidential Unit Citation; and the POW Medal. He was a charter member of the Stillwater Valley Post #6815 Veterans of Foreign War being the first commander in 1946 and was a member of the Ex-POWs Stalag XVII Association of Wooster. Ed was an advocate for countless POW’s and widows. He was inducted into the Ohio Veterans Hall of Fame on November 6, 2009. He served on the Honor Guard for over 300 veteran’s funerals.

He purchased a grocery store in Freeport in 1946, converted it to a self-serve grocery business in the 1950s and retired from Baker’s AG in Freeport in 1985 with stores in Freeport, Scio and Newcomerstown.

He was a fifteen year board member and former president of Associated Grocers in Uhrichsville; was a member of the East Central Ohio Food Dealers in Canton where he was president for one year; a board member of the Freeport State Bank and the Steubenville Heritage Bank, a school board member for ten years, a Past President and member of the Lakeland Area Booster Club, and a member and Past President of the Lakeland Lions Club.

Lewis attended Coshocton Grace United Methodist Church. He was a member of the Freeport Presbyterian Church where he previously had served as an elder and trustee; was a sixty year plus member of the Freeport Lodge #415 F&AM and a 32 Degree Mason of the Scottish Rite of Cambridge.

Ed enjoyed his family and was an avid golfer for forty years until his health declined then he became a “killer” Bridge player until his eyesight declined.

Surviving is his wife: Mary Leah Ferrell Baker. They were married October 15, 1947. Also surviving are two sons and daughter-in-laws: Richard L. (Dick) and Jeanne Baker of New Philadelphia and Gary E. and Teresa “Terrie” Baker of Coshocton; a granddaughter Heather (Clay) Utley of Seattle, Washington; a grandson Sean (Rachael) Baker of Grand Rapids, Michigan; and four great-grandchildren: Max, Tucker, Griffin, and Ari.

He was preceded in death by two brothers and three sisters: Adair (Nick) Baker, Jess Virgil Baker, Lucille Clantz, Bertha Hoovan, and Vera Caswell.

Visitation will be held from 6-8: p.m. Thursday, Sept. 10, in the Miller Funeral Home, 639 Main Street, Coshocton with a Veteran’s Salute at 6 p.m. and the veterans will stand guard by the casket during visitation.

Masonic rites will be held at 5:30 p.m. Friday, Sept. 11 in Koch Funeral Home, 216 S High Street, Freeport where visitation will follow in the funeral home from 6- 8 p.m.

Services will be held at 12 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 12, in the Freeport Presbyterian Church with visitation one hour prior to the service (11 a.m. to noon) in the church. The Reverend Teresa Baker and Pastor Jim McConnell will co-officiate. The Coshocton and Newcomerstown Veterans of Foreign Wars will conduct military rites at Greenmont Union Cemetery, Freeport, Ohio with burial following. Food and fellowship will follow at the Freeport Presbyterian Church.

Memorial contributions may be made to the Freeport Presbyterian Church. Online condolences may be made on the funeral home’s website.