Genevieve Baker, 95, of Aberdeen, SD, passed away November 5, 2012, at Manor Care Nursing Home, Aberdeen, SD.
Genevieve was born on January 6, 1917 at Ludden, North Dakota to William and Lillian (Waite) Scheffert. She attended school in Ludden and Ellendale, North Dakota, and then attended the Normal Industrial School for three years. When money for college ran out, she and five friends traveled to California to find work.
In July of 1941, she married LeRoy Wiitala in California. Together they had four sons, Stephen, Gregg, Marc, and Brent. In 1950, they moved to Frederick, South Dakota, when LeRoy took over the family farm from his grandfather.
During the 1950s, Genevieve designed and created several original biblical/scripture inspired lamps, which are now on permanent display at the Dickey County Historical Society in Oakes. Although the lamps received copyrights and patents, they were never reproduced due to prohibitive cost.
She married Leslie Baker on July 14, 1967 at Valley City, North Dakota. They made their home in the Guelph area for the next thirty years. Genevieve was a massage therapist, and operated a massage business in her home for many years. In 1997, they retired and moved to Aberdeen. Leslie passed away May 11, 2008, and Genevieve continued to make her home in Aberdeen. They loved to travel, and enjoyed trips which included New Zealand, China, Australia, and the Holy Land.
She is survived by three sons, Gregg (Laura) Wiitala, McLean, VA, Mark Wiitala, Portland, OR, and Steve (Sheryl) Wiitala, Omaha NE; two grandchildren, Douglas, Aberdeen, SD and Kristine Wiitala, Boston, MA; a sister, Francis de la Houssaye, Crowley, LA; and several nieces and nephews. Genevieve was preceded in death by her parents, her husband, Leslie, a son, Brent, three brothers, Harry, Chester, and Benjamin, three sisters, Irene, Hattie, and Edna, and her former husband, LeRoy Wiitala.
Visitation will be held on Friday, November 9, 2012, from 10:00 to 11:00 a.m. at the Guelph Community Church, Guelph, ND, with the funeral to follow at 11:00 a.m. Burial will be in the Ludden City Cemetery, Ludden, ND.
An on-line guestbook may be signed at www.dahlstromfuneralhome.com