Audrey S Baker
October 7, 1930 – March 13, 2019
Audrey Baker, whose infinite love for family, friendship and quest for adventure knew no limits, passed away Wednesday, March 13th.
Audrey was born Audrey Walker in New York City. Her loving parents Nathan Walker and Elinor Sigler Walker and her dear sister Lila Walker Rosenstock predeceased her. Audrey graduated from New York University where she earned her Bachelor of Science Degree in Social Work. After graduating she married her soulmate, Dr. Roy M. Baker of Jacksonville who predeceased her in May 1996. After two years in Ithaca, NY where Dr. Baker served in the Air Force, they, along with their infant son, moved to her new hometown of Jacksonville.
During their 45-year marriage they were a formidable team dedicated to serving the community of Northeast Florida while building lifelong friendships along the way.
She and her husband raised four devoted children, Dr. Scott Baker (Maureen), Ben Baker (Natalie), Claudia Baker (Lenny Magid), Reid Baker (Suzette). They suffered the loss of their infant son, Dean Mitchell, early in their marriage. Audrey also took great joy in the loving relationships she had with each of her children’s spouses.
She is survived by her six grandchildren, two great grandchildren, and numerous nephews and nieces, and grand-nephews and nieces.
Her family was her priority, but so too was philanthropy and civic leadership. She and her husband gave generously to causes throughout Northeast Florida such as the Jacksonville Jewish Center and River Garden. Audrey was a Lion Of Judah through the Jewish Federation of Jacksonville, she held a life membership in Hadassah, and was a member of the Ponce De Leon Society at the Cummer Museum. She was also a lifelong subscriber and donor to the Jacksonville Symphony.
Audrey was a pioneer— she helped launch Jacksonville’s first suicide prevention hotline, and was invited to serve on the national board for Suicide Prevention. Audrey was the first woman on the JEA board to sign multi-million dollar bonds on behalf of the utility. She also served on the Jacksonville’s zoning board. Audrey and her husband were part of the effort to bring an NFL Franchise to our city.
Audrey was active throughout her entire life. She was always “on-the-go.” She loved long walks and working out with her trainer at the Epping Forest gym. She played golf her entire adult life and introduced her children to the sport. She was an accomplished bridge player and loved her dear friends and partners at her bridge games. Duplicate was her favorite. She enjoyed all card games and competitive board games. She enjoyed a good martini—up, dry with extra onions. She devoured her Times-Union, and the Wall Street Journal.
She loved to travel; which early on resulted in she and her husband owning a summer home in Spain. For the past 22 years she took her growing family on extended Thanksgiving vacations—building lasting memories for her children and grandchildren to share with future generations.
Audrey loved a good laugh. She told a good story. She loved life. She lived a great one.
Graveside funeral service will be Sunday, March 17th at 2pm at the New Center Memorial Park (New Center Cemetery) located at Evergreen Cemetery, 200 E. 43rd Street, Jacksonville, FL 32208.
In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made in Audrey’s memory to the Roy and Audrey Baker Family Fund at the Jacksonville Jewish Center, 904-292-1000 or Stronger Than Stigma at www.StrongerthanStigma.org/contribute Arrangements by Hardage-Giddens Funeral Home of Mandarin, 11801 San Jose Blvd., Jacksonville, Fl 32223, 904-288-0025. www.hgmandarin.com
- Graveside Service Sunday, March 17, 2019