Obituary: Steve Baird, Feb. 1, 1943, to March 10, 2018
Steve Baird, 75, of Edwards, passed away surrounded by loved ones on Saturday, March 10. Born in Richmond, Indiana, on Feb. 1, 1943, to the late Robert and Dorothy Baird, Steve graduated from the University of Michigan in 1964.
Baird never shied away from hard or detailed work. His attention to detail led to a commendation from his commanding officer on the U.S.S. Nathanael Greene ballistic missile submarine in 1969. As a Naval supply officer, he learned the motto “food is morale,” which he took with him throughout his life. His work ethic also served him well in his chosen career as an actuary for various firms. In 1970, he became a fellow in the Society of Actuaries. He relished solving problems.
Baird worked hard, but he always made time for his family, friends and community. He volunteered with the youth ministry at his various churches in Illinois, Michigan and Colorado. He also took on the job of herding boisterous boys, including his sons, as an assistant scoutmaster and a hockey coach. And in times of need, he stepped in to help the Vail Valley, working with Vail Mountain Rescue, staffing and organizing the Vail Valley Salvation Army mobile Canteen kitchen and assuming the role of team leader of mission trips to rebuild after flooding in New Orleans, South Dakota, Texas and Lyons.
Baird also started weekly community suppers at the Edwards Interfaith Chapel and Community Center while revitalizing the volunteer hospital chaplaincy at Vail Health. Baird’s service included leadership postings, first as president of the St. Andrew’s Society of Detroit and later as the chairman of the Eagle Valley Religious Foundation fundraising committee’s successful $8 million capital campaign resulting in the construction of the Edwards Interfaith Chapel. Since 2010, Baird’s ministry as parish deacon of the Episcopal Church of the Transfiguration modeled faithful and excellent service to the congregation, interfaith community and the entire Vail Valley.
Baird will be remembered for his giving spirit, love of organizing and cooking delicious meals, meticulously re-created model train sets, intricate gingerbread houses, Ford cars, enthusiasm for seeing new places, admiration of the Colorado mountains, getting frustrated hitting a small, white ball toward a yellow flag and fondness for all things Scottish — kilts, haggis, Burns and single-malt scotch.
Steve Baird is survived by his loving wife of 54 years, Karen (Heil), of Cordillera; his son Larry and his wife Lorrie (Paull) and their children, Sawyer and his wife Elia, Bailey and Carly, of Ann Arbor, Michigan; his son Matt and his wife Patty (Smith) and their children Caleb and Rebekah, of Ypsilanti, Michigan; his daughter Trish, of Denver; his sister, Linda Galvin, of Avon; brother and sister-in-law Bill Heil and Marj Field, of Grosse Ille, Michigan; brother and sister-in-law John and Peggy Amendt, of Wheaton, Illinois; and many nieces and nephews. He was predeceased by his brother-in-law John Galvin, of Avon, and his nephew Rob Galvin, of Denver.
A memorial celebration of Baird’s life will be held on Friday, March 23, at 3 p.m. at the Edwards Interfaith Chapel and Community Center, 32138 U.S. Highway 6 in Edwards. The memorial service will be led by Bishop Robert J. O’Neil and immediately followed by a festive, on-site reception. In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be directed to the Edwards Interfaith Chapel Columbarium construction fund, edwardsinterfaithchapel.org.