Our loving father, Dennis Ray Baird, passed away on Monday, March 16, 2020, due to injuries sustained in a car accident. He was born on February 11, 1947, in Payson, Utah, to goodly parents, Frederick Twede Baird and Sarah Adelicia Orton. His father was a farmer, a World War II veteran, and a master genealogist. His mother is an example of love and service. Dennis loved his parents and embodied these traits of service, hard work, and unconditional love.
Dennis grew up on the family farm near West Mountain in Payson, before moving to Orem at a young age. He graduated from Brigham Young University in Provo, Utah, with a Bachelor of Science, and also served as president of Samuel Hall Society, a highly acclaimed service organization. Dennis was honored to serve in the Army National Guard units, where he was assigned to military intelligence. Dennis faithfully served as a missionary for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in Stockholm, Sweden.
While at BYU, Dennis met Christine Jones. He fell for this California girl, and she loved his cowboy ways. They married in the Salt Lake City LDS temple on May 30, 1972. Together, they enjoyed Cowboy Church in their boots and western attire, listening to the bagpipes in their Baird plaid at the Kirkin’ o’ the Tartan, or crisscrossing the globe to visit the world’s beautiful gardens and historical sites.
A successful entrepreneur and civic leader, he owned and operated several commercial businesses and volunteered in the community. He served on the board of directors for Washington School of Graduate Studies and Washington School of Law. On the weekends he could be found spending time with his grandchildren or fishing the rivers of the Wasatch Mountains.
A faithful father and grandfather, Dennis loved his family. He turned his heart to his father and joined him on multiple trips to various genealogical sites in Scotland and the Eastern United States and later accompanied him on a veteran’s Honor Flight to Washington DC. He honored his rich pioneer heritage by running the Deseret News Marathon, following the pioneer trail to the Salt Lake valley, and was selected to run a leg of the Mormon Battalion relay, retracing the grueling march from Council Bluffs, Iowa to San Diego, California.
Dennis loved God and his fellow men. He loved to study and teach from the scriptures and served faithfully in all the auxiliaries of the church including Bishop, High Priest Group Leader, Elders Quorum President, Young Men President, Stake Presidency and Ministering Brother.
Dennis is survived by his six children and twenty five grandchildren: son, Matthew Frederick Baird, Salt Lake City, Utah; daughter, Heather Christine Baird (Richard) Callister, Orinda, California; daughter, Leslie Sarah Baird (Scott) Sorenson, Prosper, Texas; daughter, Karen Maxine Baird (Derek) Christensen, Pleasant Grove, Utah; daughter, Stephanie Edna Baird (Samuel) Larson, Sandy, Utah; daughter, Joanna Hazel Baird (Jeffrey) Beus, Kuna, Idaho; as well as his mother, Sarah Orton Baird; brother, Scott (Bonnie) Baird; sister, Jill (Arthur) Allen; sister, Jackie (Mark) Standing; brother, Chad (Cathy) Baird; sister, Kimberli (Brian) Westover; brother, Daren (Camille) Baird; and his dear friend, Debbie Cusick.
We find great comfort in knowing of his joyous reunion with his sweetheart and wife, Christine, and other family members preceding him in death: father, Frederick; sister, Vickie Baird; and brother, Lonnie Frederick Baird.
Services will be on Monday, March 23, at 11 A.M. MDT, and will be live streamed and made available for all to view. To watch the live stream and express condolences please visit www.nelsonmortuary.com.