Nancy Jane Elmstrom (Leach) Baker, 85, passed away peacefully on May 17, 2018, in Aurora, Illinois, with her family by her side. She was preceded in death by her husband Norman W. Baker, her brother Robert E. Leach and her parents Walter and Josephine (Elmstrom) Leach.
Nancy was born in Providence, Rhode Island, on January 18, 1933, and graduated from Hope High School in June 1951. She and Norman previously resided in Rumford, Rhode Island, and Derry, New Hampshire, before moving to Wheaton, Illinois, in 1987.
She is survived by her daughter Deborah L. (Baker) Maxwell, son-in-law Stephen Maxwell, adored grandsons Stephen (Madalyne) and Christopher and great-granddaughter Lilly Anna.
Nancy was employed for many years as a receptionist for the Swan, Keeney and Smith Law Office in Providence, Rhode Island. She taught Sunday School at Grace Church in Providence for many years and was an active member of various PTAs during her daughter’s school years. After moving to Illinois, she served as a personal banker at Chase Bank in Wheaton until she retired. She added great value wherever she worked.
Nancy was known for her great love of animals, particularly her adored Maltese dogs Charles I, Charles II and Luke. She loved gardening and cooking and was an avid knitter who gladly shared her skill patiently with anyone interested in learning. She thoroughly enjoyed welcoming you into her home to sit and chat over a cup of coffee.
Beloved mother, grandmother, aunt, friend, lover of God’s creatures and other beautiful things, gifted athlete, gardener, artist, cook, home-cherisher. Her blue eyes were beautiful. She often said of her marriage, “One man, one wife through life.” Nancy was a free-spirited, opinionated, stubborn New Englander who subscribed to the New Hampshire state motto “Live Free or Die.” She has joyfully gone home to her loved ones. She will be missed.
A memorial service will be held for Nancy and her late husband Norman later in the year at Swan Point Cemetery in Rhode Island. Much gratitude to Divine Hospice for their incredible care and comfort.
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