Clifford Baker

Clifford Baker, age 68, died December 30, 2020 with his wife Rhonda by his side. Though Cliff’s stories often ran on, this obituary will not.  Cliff was born October 19, 1952 in Kenedy, Texas to Thomas “Buddy” Baker and Natalie Bain Baker. Buddy was postmaster in Kenedy for many years, and Nata served as the church organist as well as raising their three lively boys.  Cliff spent his earliest years in Choate, Texas, igniting his life-long love of the San Antonio River and all of the South Texas wildlife. He was heartbroken when his family moved to “the city”, but soon made the best of it. He graduated from Kenedy High School in 1971, earning his private pilot’s license that summer. In 1973, after six years of dating, he married his true love and soul mate, Rhonda McGowan. Cliff and Rhonda both graduated from The University of Texas at Austin in 1975 and quickly began their next adventure when Cliff joined the Air Force in 1976 as a finance officer. During his tour in Turkey, he was accepted into pilot training, and as a pilot he flew the T-36, the F-106, and the F-16. After fourteen different bases, two kids, and service in the Gulf War, he retired from duty and moved with his family back to Kenedy, Texas. He then began a second career serving Kenedy ISD as a teacher and later, technology coordinator. After 9/11, he felt called to return to active duty and served for an additional four years, including a deployment to the Middle East. Upon returning to Karnes County, he picked up his career in education, serving as grant coordinator, then school administrator.  When not spinning an elaborate yarn, Cliff’s many hobbies and interests included photography, model trains, and all things outdoors, including managing the Baker family farm.

He is survived by his wife Rhonda, son Cliff, daughter Jamie and grandson Levi; mother Natalie Bain Baker and brothers Thomas Bennet Baker, Jr. (Linda) and James Alan Baker (Barbara); Mother-in-law Billye Jo McGowan and sisters-in-law Teresa McGowan Agee and Nancy McGowan Johnson (Joe Mac), as well as many beloved nephews and nieces.

Due to the current pandemic, funeral services will be private; however Cliff’s family looks forward to celebrating his life with a memorial for family and friends which will be held at a later date.


Donations may be sent to the Texas Parks & Wildlife Foundation

3 Memory Tributes for “Clifford Baker”


    Hated to hear of Cliffords passing. It is shameful that we don’t see out long time friends while they are alive and well. I remember the good times at Choate with all the friends. The Bakers, Nutts, Bagwells, Morgans, and everyone else. Those times are cherished more when we lose a loved on. My condolences to the Baker Family during these times. May the Lord bless and comfort you.

    Author's City: BEEVILLE
  • Linda Tyrone-Williams

    So sorry for your loss.

    Author's City: Kenedy
  • Kathy Chapman

    Space did not permit a list of all of Clifford’s cousins who number over 20 and all of whom respected and adored him for his caring, good humor, and integrity. We were always so proud of his military accomplishments – keeping Americans safe. I remember Christmas Eve telephone calls from Clifford and Rhonda in some far off location. I never heard them complain despite the difficulties of moving their family and living in countries all over the world. We are also full of love and pride in his children, Cliff and Jamie, who he adored and respected. And grandson Levi, who brought endless pleasure to him, Rhonda and the entire extended family. Clifford’s passing leaves a void in our lives, which cannot be filled. We will continue to remember Clifford and retell stories for many years to come. Thank you, dear cousin, for a lifetime of memories.
    Kathy Chapman

    Author's City: Kenedy