John Lincoln Baxter Jr. ’42 died on October 8, 2015, in Loveland, Colorado.
(The following appeared in The Times Record):
John Lincoln Baxter Jr., (Jack), 95, passed away on Oct. 8, 2015, in Loveland, CO.
Jack was born on March 11, 1920, in Brunswick, Maine, the first son of John Lincoln Baxter, a sixth generation Brunswick resident (direct descendant of Rev. Robert Dunlap, Brunswick’s first minister in the mid-1700s) and Constance French Baxter, originally from Randolph, MA, and a Mayflower descendant.
His only brother, Hartley Cone Baxter II, born in 1926 preceded him in death in 1996. Jack was the great-grandson of James Phinney Baxter, a food processing pioneer, six-time mayor of Portland, historian and beloved philanthropist. Percival Proctor Baxter, governor of Maine 1921-1925, was Jack’s great-grand uncle.
He is survived by his son John (Randy) Baxter of Loveland, CO, daughter Connie Baxter Marlow of Aspen, CO and daughter Judy Baxter of Denver, CO as well as five grandchildren, six great-grandchildren and two nephews Eric Baxter of Gray, Maine and Scott Baxter of Manchester, NH.
He was an active business leader, public servant, legislator, duck hunter, golfer, skier, equestrian, world traveler and photographer.
Jack graduated Cum Laude, Phi Beta Kappa, from Bowdoin College in 1942 after attending Deerfield Academy. The day after his graduation he married his high school sweetheart Alice Comee. They settled in Brunswick and moved to Pittsfield in 1948 where they raised their three children.
Jack carried forth the Baxter mandate of service to humanity throughout his inspiring life. He became president of the pioneering family food processing business H.C. Baxter & Bro, and was Majority Leader of the 100th Maine Legislature as well as Vice-Chairman of the Governor’s Executive Council before he and Alice, with daughter Judy, moved to Oregon in 1965 when Jack merged the family business with a food company in Oregon. He merged that company with and subsequently became vice president of the Fortune 500 company Amfac, Inc. and was CEO of Amfac Foods until his retirement in 1981. Like his father before him, John L. Baxter Sr., Jack was a leader in the food processing business and became president of various national industry associations. Jack was identified as a true contributor to America by “Who’s Who in America” in 1982-1983.
While in Oregon Jack contributed to the people of the state through leadership roles in education and as a life trustee of Lewis and Clark College in Portland. Jack continued a family tradition begun by his ancestor Captain John Dunlap, who was a founding overseer of Bowdoin College in 1794. A family member was on the Bowdoin Board of Overseers/Trustees until the death of Jack’s father John Lincoln Baxter in 1984.
Jack spent his final three years in independent living at The Hillcrest in Loveland, Colorado, to be close to his children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren. Surrounded by his photography and art, with horses grazing in the field outside his window, Jack sat in his chair in the sun passing the day with another favorite pastime — reading The Denver Post and The New York Times from front to back.
His humor, smile and positive attitude made Jack a favorite of his caregivers. His loving support and respect for all he encountered will be greatly missed, and always appreciated as he lives on in their memories of a life well-lived.
His ashes were interred in the Baxter family plot in Pine Grove Cemetery in Brunswick, Maine, on Oct. 24, 2015, with a gathering of friends and family to bid him a fond farewell.
For a full obituary, go to: http://bit.ly/JLBObituaryKF.