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Patricia "Pat" Baker

Patricia "Pat" Ann Draper Baker passed on July 20th, 2021, in the presence of her daughter, at Westfield Quality Care of Aurora, Nebraska.

A Celebration of Life Service will be held on Sunday, July 25th at 2:00 pm at the Evangelical Free Church in Aurora, Nebraska. No Visitation. The family kindly asks that attendees be mindful of COVID exposure. They encourage everyone to wear a mask during the service. Masks will be provided. The service will be livestreamed on the Aurora Evangelical Free Church Facebook page. In lieu of flowers, please consider donating to one of the following ministries of which Pat was an active supporter: Christian Resource Center (CRC) General Fund, 603 South K Road, Giltner, NE 68841 or the Evangelical Free Church - AWANA Program, 1202 A Street, Aurora, NE 68818. Higby-McQuiston Mortuary is in charge of arrangements. Condolences may be e-mailed to the family through the mortuary website at www.higbymortuary.com.


Born during the Great Depression in Lexington, Nebraska, on January 4th, 1937, the youngest of four, Pat often told stories of riding her ornery horse to school and the ways the family worked to make it through the thin years. After graduating from Lexington High School in 1955 she married Bernie Baker and moved to Saratoga, Wyoming. Her daughter Chris followed in birth a year later.

Finding her way into a career, she began working for Mack Truck Industries in the early '60s. Steadily working her way up from a secretary position in Denver, Colorado, she became the national Manager for Dealer Development and Parts Training & Fleets and a trailblazer-taking her seat in the board room and always remembering that she was a woman working in a man's world. Throughout her professional life, she lived in San Leandro, California, Des Plaines, Illinois, and Allentown, Pennsylvania. In 1987 Pat began attending Lehigh Valley Baptist Church in Allentown-a decision that marked a change in her life and brought with it a deep peace, a sense of meaning in life, as well as passion for her faith and for the local church. In 1996 Mack Truck Industries honored Pat with a lifetime achievement award for 31 years of service.

In 1997, after decades of weekly traveling around the country while working out of the Mack World Headquarters, Pat settled in Aurora to be near her daughter, son-in-law, and three granddaughters. Transitioning from working life to retirement brought with it time for ball games, holiday band recitals, making her famous chicken noodle soup, card games, and long summer road trips with her youngest granddaughter. She always had a curiosity about new places and took solo trips to the Grand Canyon for a rafting adventure, Canada to see the polar bears, and Utah to visit Zion, Arches, and Bryce Canyon National Parks.

Pat loved playing an active role in the lives of her family, neighbors, friends, and church family. For years she kept a weekly lunch date with friends. She found great fulfillment in finding ways to care for those around her. She is already missed by her family and will be laid to rest at the Aurora cemetery.

Pat was preceded in death by her parents, Anna Irene (Garner) Draper and Charles Thomas Draper, and three siblings, Opal Anderson, Katie Sloan, Don (Buck) Draper.

She is survived by her daughter, Christy Irene (Baker) Klein, son-in-law, Gordon Klein, three granddaughters Amber (Brett) Rogers, Abbie Powers, Katie (Jake) Fisher, as well as three great-grandchildren, Cameron Rogers, Dexton Rogers, and Wren Fisher.

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