With great sadness
and heavy hearts the family of Dr. Dirk E. Baer, 62, of Chesterton, IN,
announces his passing which occurred peacefully after a lengthy illness on
December 24, 2017.
Dirk was born in
Logansport, IN, on February 5, 1955. He shared this birthday with his
beloved grandmother. He was the devoted son of Jack and Loa Baer.
Dirk is survived by
his loving wife of 30 years Kim, parents Jack and Loa Baer, brother Bradley
(Carol), sister Bobbi Hall (Chris), sister-in-law Catherine Sleeper (David),
nieces Jessica Baer (Jacob Nelson), Lisa Stroud (Ken Whitford), and Rebecca
Marcoux (Tim), and his beloved nephew Andrew “Sluggo” Hall (Katie), a
great-nephew Zachary Conlon, and his most cherished exchange-student
Dirk graduated from
Pioneer Jr.-Sr. High School and continued on to receive an undergraduate
degree in social studies education from the University of Evansville. He
earned a master’s degree from Indiana University. He earned his Doctorate in
Education from Ball State University in 1987.
Dirk’s life work
was public education. He began his career in 1977 as a government,
economics, and Spanish teacher in the Oregon Davis School Corporation. While
there, he coached junior high basketball and varsity golf. During his
summers, Dirk served as a driver’s education instructor for Culver Military
Academy. In 1980 Dirk became assistant principal at Oregon Davis Jr.-Sr.
High school. He then served as Principal there from 1981-1987. In 1987 Dirk
began his career in the Duneland School Corporation as the Principal of
Chesterton High School. He served as principal there for six years. He loved
every minute he spent with the students and staff. He was dedicated to his
profession, but more importantly the people he served.
In 1992 Dirk became
the Superintendent of Finance for the Duneland School Corporation. Beginning
in 2002 he served the Duneland School Corporation as Superintendent of
Schools. Dirk retired from Duneland Schools in 2013 after 26 years of
dedication and service. He also served on the Chesterton police commission
as well as the Chesterton Rotary. While in Rotary, he had the honor of being
named a Paul Harris Fellow. He also formed the “hardest working committee.”
Dirk coined the phrase “you can’t win if you’re not in.” Dirk was a devoted
member of the Masonic Lodge. Dirk was a member of the Duneland Community
Church. Dirk was a devoted Cubs fan (even in the non-winning years), and had
an extreme fondness for the Three Stooges. We remember Dirk as one of the
most intelligent, kind-hearted family men to walk this Earth. We are better
because we knew him, and his spirit will live on forever within our hearts.
The funeral service
will be held on Friday, Dec. 29, at 10:00 a.m., at Duneland Community
Church, 1552 Pioneer Trail, Chesterton, IN, 46304, with Greg Arthur
Visitation will be
held on Thursday, Dec. 28, from 3:00 p.m. Đ 7:00 p.m., at Chesterton High
School auditorium, 2125 S. 11th Street, Chesterton, IN, 46304. Private
burial will follow the funeral service.
arrangements are being handled by Edmonds & Evans Funeral Home, 517
Broadway, Chesterton, IN, 46304.
In lieu of flowers
memorial donations may be given to the Duneland Education Foundation, 411 S.
5th Street, Suite 1, Chesterton, IN, 46304, Duneland Community Church, and
the Masonic Home, 690 State Street, Franklin, IN, 46131.