Family asks folks to line Hwy. 59 to salute fallen veteran

Baldwin County

LOXLEY, Ala. (WKRG) — The family of Vietnam veteran Ernie Baker hopes Highway 59 will be lined with people waving flags and saluting their father, brother, friend as he takes his last ride through Baldwin County Thursday to the Alabama Veterans Memorial Cemetary.

82-year-old Ernest Harold Baker passed away this week. His baby brother Gary says he will remember him as, “a man who loved his country, loved to have fun, joke loved to ride his Harley.”

He spent 20 years in the Air Force, did multiple tours in Vietnam and considered veterans of every service a friend. “I think that is what he would want to be known for,” says Gary. “He did help people.”

Very active in supporting veterans News 5 even spoke with Ernie a couple of years ago before the dedication of the Veterans Memorial in Loxley. “Very proud,” he said. “Proud that I can honor other veterans,” and he did helping with multiple veterans memorials around the county. Maybe the one he was proudest of sits in Bicentennial Park, the Vietnam Veterans memorial.

As he battled cancer, the one thing he wanted most was to have a full military funeral. Covid 19 took that away from him for now so, in the meantime. “Anybody can line the street. If you’ve got an American flag bring it wave it,” says Gary. Ernie would have loved that. “Keep your social distance and stay safe and get out there and support him. He did a lot for the country and for Baldwin County.”

Mr. Baker was a member of the Patriot Guard and they will lead the procession starting at 9 o’clock Thursday morning as they leave Cason Funeral Home in Foley and head to Spanish Fort.

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