Susan Michelle “Shelley” Baker, 34, passed away at home in her sleep early on November 5, 2013. She was born on November 8, 1978 in Elmira, New York. She was raised in Trumansburg, NY, and proudly graduated from Ithaca High School in 2000.
Shelley worked as an Administrative Aide at the Francisca Racker Center for the past several years.
She is survived by her parents, Karen Backer and Ed Dellert of Ithaca, and Dale and Nancy Baker of Trumansburg; her siblings Graig and Patrick Baker, step-sisters Laura and Mindy Dellert and step-brothers Todd and Gregg Dellert, Chris and Kevin Hicks, and Anthony and Scott Zinzola as well as her grandfather Dick Backer. Surviving Aunts and Uncles include Joe (Roxy) Backer, Susan (Jeffrey) VanDeCar, Jeff (Alison) Backer, Becky Backer, Jerry (Helene) Dellert and Phil Baker as well as numerous cousins, nieces and nephews. Shelley was pre-deceased by her Uncles, Hank Baker and Dick Backer; Aunts, Dolores Magacs and Susan Dellert and Grandmother Betty Backer.
Shelley has touched so many lives throughout the years. The countless number of nurses and doctors, co-workers at the Racker Center, church group members and Special Olympics friends played a major role in the happiness and fulfillment of Shelley’s life. To attempt to mention all of the individuals that have been inspired by this amazing young lady would be quite a feat. Her strength, determination, and spirit that carried her through many life struggles has been, and will continue to be, an inspiration to all of us. Shelley always had a smile to share and a hug for everyone in her life. She genuinely enjoyed attending church at Bethel Grove each Sunday, bingo at the Ithaca Youth Bureau, and had a social calendar that most people would be jealous of. She truly enjoyed her jigsaw puzzles, computer games and beating all of her family and friends at games like Skip-bo. Her ability to connect with people using modern technology astounded all of us and never failed to put a smile on all of our faces when Shelley reached out to say hello. She was a genuine friend to so many people, never missing a birthday, anniversary or special occasion of those in her life. She will be truly missed by all who knew her and live on forever in our hearts and fond memories.
All services will be held at the Bethel Grove Church on Rte 79 in Ithaca on Friday, November 8, 2013. Visitation will be from 1 – 2 pm and a Memorial Service celebrating Shelley’s life will be immediately following at 2pm. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Francisca Racker Center or the charity of one’s choice in Shelley’s name.