December 31, 1932 - May 3, 2019
Janice Harriet Mitchell Baker, 86, of Benton Harbor, passed away peacefully at home surrounded by her family on May 3, 2019. Janice was born December 31, 1932 in Benton Harbor, the first child of eight born to Don P. and Katherine (Watts) Mitchell. She was a proud member of the class of 1951 of Benton Harbor High School. In June 1954, she met the love of her life, Francis Edward Baker. On November 6, 1954 they were married in Benton Harbor, and moved to Kewanee, IL to begin their life together. While in Kewanee, two children were born - Charlene Marie Baker (in 1956) and Anthony Francis Baker (in 1959). The family moved back permanently to Benton Harbor in 1963. In 1964, Jacquelene Diane Baker was born into the family. While the children were small, Janice was a housewife, but decided to start working when the youngest child started school. Starting out as a lunchroom aid, she eventually moved up to be a Secretary for the Benton Harbor Area Schools. She served as elementary school secretary at Columbus, MLK, Johnson; and finished her career as the secretary in the AV Department. She would say her major accomplishment, after helping with the children, is serving on the negotiating team of the secretarialunion. She retired from the BHAS in 1994 after having a major medical incident in 1993, but survived and lived life fully. Janice loved reading true crime novels, loved sports - especially the Detroit Tigers, Lions and Pistons. Janice was happiest when surrounded by family - who will miss her tremendously. Janice is survived by her husband of 64 years, Francis; her children Charlene, Anthony (Tony) and Jacquelene (Jackie) - all of Benton Harbor; her grandson, Boaz Baker of Oakland, CA; her sisters Diane (Joseph) DeFrance of Saint Joseph and Kathleen (Walter) Bowman of Lakeland, FL; her brothers Dwight Pete (Margo) Mitchell, Duane (Perona) Mitchell, Don C. (Geraldine) Mitchell and Stephen (Marlene) Mitchell-all of Benton Harbor, sister-in-law Minnie Mitchell of Caledonia, MI; brother-in-law Nathaniel Baker of Xenia, OH and a host of nieces and nephews. She was preceded in death by her parents and her brother, Gary Mitchell. A celebration of her life will be held at 12:00 PM on Saturday, May 11, 2019 at First Presbyterian Church, 475 Green Street in Benton Harbor. Visitation at the church will be from 10:00 AM until time of service. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Brain Injury Association of Michigan, 7305 Grand River Drive, Suite 100, Brighton, MI. 48114-7379. Arrangements are by the Fairplain Chapel of Florin Funeral Service in Benton Township. Please share memories, messages or photos at www.florin.net.
Janice Harriet Mitchell Baker, 86, of Benton Harbor, passed away peacefully at home surrounded by her family on May 3, 2019. Janice was born December 31, 1932 in Benton Harbor, the first child of eight born to Don P. and Katherine (Watts) Mitchell.... View Obituary & Service Information
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