Norman “Barney” Baird age 90, of Fairfield, passed away Saturday, June 15, 2019, after a short illness being moved two days ago to Parkview Care Center.
Norman “Barney” Baird was born in Des Moines County, Iowa on March 25, 1929, the son of Rodman and Helen (Delzell) Baird. He was baptized in the Sharon Reformed Presbyterian Church rural Morning Sun and a member there until moving to Fairfield. As a youngster he was called “Barney” & he was known by it for the rest of his extraordinary & fulfilled life. Following his graduation in 1946 from the Morning Sun High School, he was employed at the Farmall Works in Moline, and the Linders Service Station in Morning Sun, working summers custom baling for neighbors.
After 2 years service from 1951-53 during the Korean War, he was married on March 6, 1954, in Burlington to Verda J. Johnson. They rented farms in the Morning Sun/Yarmouth area for nine years. In 1963 they purchased the farm near Wooster in Cedar township which remains their home. Being conservation minded, many feet of tiles and terraces were built, including ponds from which many individuals have fished over the years. He received a County Conservation award in 1987.
His wife worked by his side over the many years helping at spring planting and fall harvest seasons, as well as in their hog and cattle enterprises. He thoroughly enjoyed livestock auctions and farm sales. He saw so many changes in farming since 1948 when he owned his first tractor and baler doing custom baling. Most of his machinery owned was John Deere green & all his trucks and pickups were Chevrolets & his hagie sprayers. His cattle feeding operation grew from he and his sons carrying large bushel baskets down to the bunks until fully automated. He looked forward to reminiscing with his coffee buddies each day, both mornings and afternoons. Barney spent many retirement hours tinkering in his heated shop and salvage.
He served on the Farmers Home Administration Loan Committee from 1970-1973, was one of the original members of the newly formed County Conservation Board created in 1972 in Jefferson County. When his two sons were in FFA he served on the local advisory committee, and was member of the Farm Bureau. In 1973 he was President of the local Young Farmers Group when there were 108 enrolled for a 10-week class.
He is survived by his wife, two sons Randy (Jan) Baird and Ron (Terri) Baird both of Fairfield and daughter Diane (Ken) Klosterman of Cedar Rapids, also five grandchildren Mindy (Kevin) Stultz, Brian (Brooke) Baird, Patrick (Erica) Baird, Anna (Matt) Luke and Roger (Holly) Baird and 11 great grandchildren. One sister Lillian Mott.
Barney was preceded in death by his parents, one sister Marge Stout and one brother Kenneth Baird.
Visitation for family & friends will be 5:00 p.m. – 7:00 p.m., Tuesday, June 18, 2019, at Behner Funeral Home.
Funeral service will be 10:30 a.m., Wednesday, June 19, 2019 at Behner Funeral Home with Dave Goehring officiating. Burial with military rites will be at Evergreen Cemetery.
In lieu of flowers, memorials can be made to Jefferson County Conservation Board or FFA Alumni of Fairfield. Please make the checks out to Verda Baird and she will send one check to each organization. Cards and memorials may be mailed to 2791 240th Street, Fairfield, Iowa 52556.
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