‘He could always find the good in people’: Fallen Nicholas Co. deputy’s nephew honors uncle
NICHOLAS COUNTY, W.Va. (WSAZ) - Nicholas County Probation Officer Aaron Evans said his uncle, Deputy Tom Baker, was an early role model.
“He was such a good guy, the way he carried himself professionally around people in law enforcement but he was such a fun guy outside of it,” he said. “It’s been a tough weekend.”
Baker died in a shooting Friday night in Birch River that injured Cpl. Josh Ellison, another member of the Nicholas County Sheriff’s Department.
Evans said he bonded with his uncle over a strong Christian faith, noting Baker also served as a deacon at Restoration Fellowship Church.
Evans is set to preside over Baker’s funeral services Wednesday, and while proud to do it, admits it will be a challenge.
“I can’t do this on my own, I’m really relying on God to get me through this,” he said. “We know that by ourselves, we can do nothing but through God all things are possible and that’s where his strength comes and that’s where my strength lies through a lot of prayers.”
Evans said his uncle’s influence will be felt beyond the sheriff’s department and his larger-than-life personality will be felt across the county.
“In every situation, Tom could find laughter and he was always able to find joy and peace and happiness in whatever he did, no matter the circumstance or situation, he could always find the good in people,” he recalled. “His legacy is definitely going to be his family and the probably the 100 or so deputies in the community he touched. He was a real big guy, who left a really big impression on people.”
Evans hopes his uncle’s death will send a message about law enforcement.
“Be aware that police officers are in danger every day,” he said. “Maybe with more awareness that police officers’ lives are in danger maybe we can get some help.”
Baker’s funeral services are set for Wednesday, June 9 at the Summersville Armory and Convention Center. Public viewing is from noon to 5 p.m., with the funeral to begin at 5 p.m.
Following the service, the group will head to Walker Cemetery.
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