On Saturday, June 21st 2014 Mrs. Nancy Baker, long time resident of South Slocan, B.C. at 87 years. She passed away peacefully and in good care at Jubilee Manor, Nelson ending a long struggle with Alzheimer’s.
She is survived by her loving husband of 67 years, Stanley Baker of South Slocan, her children Penny Stuyt (Pete) of Cherryville, David Baker (Brenda) of Millarville, Alberta and Peter Baker of North Vancouver. She is survived by her brother Don Black of Keremeos, and sisters Helen and Carol of Squamish. She also is also survived by her grandchildren Marci-Lyne(Shawn), Margaret(Cary), Jordan, and Brandon and her great grandchildren Allashua(5) Jerrika(5) and Aiden(3 mos)
Nancy was born as Xanthe Thanos, in Coleman, Alberta and moved to Vancouver from the Crowsnest Pass at age 2 with her mother Ena on the sudden passing of her father Alex Thanos, a confectioner and owner of the Palm Café in Coleman. In Vancouver, her mother married her adopted father Donald Black and in time became big sister to Helen, Carol and brother Don. She attended Vancouver Technical School in Vancouver and developed a passion for Sign Painting, Calligraphy and Art. Working at Spencers Sign Shop with Dorothy Baker(later her sister-in-law) honed those skills.
In 1947, on New Years Eve, she married Stan Baker also of Vancouver and recently discharged from the Royal Canadian Navy. They moved to the Kootenays where Stan found employment with West Kootenay Power and where they built a home in the village of South Slocan on Baker Road above the village store and post office.
As well as a homemaker and great mother, Nancy was well known in South Slocan, Nelson, and in the Slocan valley as a contributor to the community and a frequent writer to the Nelson Daily News. She also served as a School Trustee, and as the last School Board Chairman of Slocan School District. She was a founder Selkirk College, and involved in the establishment of the Aviation program there. For many years she lettered by hand each and every one of the Selkirk College graduation diplomas. In those years she also took many College courses, including those in Business administration and law.
Nancy worked in a number of Nelson businesses including Carmichael Paints, Kalyniuk Insurance services, Fidelity Life, and the local ICBC office. Later she ran her own business, “Signs of the Times” and was well known for hand lettering many local signs, boats, semi trucks. Her work even included some lettering for the movie Roxanne, shot in Nelson. A special place in her heart were the fire trucks that were refurbished by Selkirk College that were distributed throughout the smaller communities in the province. She also especially loved the lettering and pin striping, (by hand) big rigs, logging trucks and boats.
Nancy shared a passion for the outdoors and the Kootenays with her husband Stan and was for many years a member of Kootenay Mountaineering Club and was editor of the Kootenay Karabiner for a time. She cross-country and downhill skied at both Nelson and Rossland. She was into health foods and nutrition throughout her life, campaigned against junk mail and for women’s rights. She loved to garden, cook and bake. Her family all have our favorite recipes of those days.
A memorial service will be held at Chapel of Thompson Funeral Service Ltd., Nelson on her birthday September 3, 2014 at 1:00 p.m.
As expression of sympathy family and friends may make donations to the Alzheimer Society of B.C. West Kootenays
809 – Davies Street, Nelson, BC V1L3T2 or Nelson Jubilee Manor 500 West Beasley, Nelson, BC V1L6G9 .
Online condolences may be expressed at
Funeral arrangements are under the direction of
Thompson Funeral Service Ltd.