A Memorial Service to celebrate the life of William J. “Billy” Baker, 34, a resident of Davenport, will be 1:30 p.m. Monday, June 7, 2021, at Halligan-McCabe-DeVries Funeral Home in downtown Davenport. Per his wishes, the rite of cremation has been accorded and inurnment will be in Holy Family Cemetery. The family will greet friends from 10:30 a.m. until the time of the service on Monday. pandemic protocols must be maintained. Memorials in Billy’s name have been established through the Best Friends Animal Society as well as the Eastern Avenue Disc Golf Course (through the GoFundMe.com Billy Baker Tee Pad Memorial). Those wishing to contribute may do so here (https://bestfriends.org/sanctuary/explore-sanctuary/angels-rest/memorials). Billy passed away unexpectedly Friday, May 28, 2021, at his home.
William John Baker (“Billy”) was born October 27, 1986 at St. Luke’s hospital (now Genesis East) in Davenport, IA to William and Nancy (Pelzel) Baker. At 5 ½ weeks premature, it was clear that Billy was anxious to come into this world. Between his spirit and full head of hair, he made quite the impression - not just on his parents but on everyone he met, and it wasn’t long before all the nurses fell in love with him.
Billy maintained that enthusiasm throughout his life, perhaps summarizing it best himself by saying “I love music, movies, games and laughing, enough said, right?” He also loved spending time with family. Whether he was out fishing with his Grandpa and sister Katy, sharing a disc golf adventure with his dad, bonding with his Mom over a shared appreciation and love of music, or snuggling with the family dogs, Ellie and Brandy – the “what” didn’t seem to matter as much as the “with who”.
Billy also had a unique and enviable ability to learn and master a variety of talents. He earned his black belt in Taekwondo at a very early age, which lead to an appreciation (and impressive collection) of Samurai swords and a love of foreign martial arts films. Another passion was magic; Billy had an ever-growing repertoire of tricks that he would use to entertain family and friends, which never failed to draw a smile or a question of “how did you do that?!” Perhaps the hobby those closest to him appreciated most was his cooking. Billy had perfected the art of cooking over an open flame – both on grill and over a campfire. Katy’s S’mores were one of his many specialties that – much like Billy - will not be forgotten.
Those left to honor Billy’s memory include: parents, Bill and Nancy Baker (Davenport); sister, Katelyn “Katy” Baker (Ankeny); grandmother, Carol Pelzel (Davenport); aunts and uncles, John & Jolene Pelzel (Mcalester, OK), John & Connie Westerhof (Merrimack, NH), Michael Pelzel (Denver, CO), Steve & Sue Mangels (Davenport) and Amy Baker (Eldridge). He was preceded in death by his grandparents, Bill and Madge Baker, his grandpa John Pelzel and his aunts, Elizabeth (Beth) Pelzel, Peggy Baker and Becky Baker.
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