Harvey Lee Baker was a embellished Vietnam Warfare veteran credited with saving the lives of two fellow Marines.
“He was a warfare hero, and he was murdered,” Baker’s daughter, Nicole Folger, instructed The Capital-Journal.
Baker, 74, was discovered deceased Thursday at a North Topeka cellular dwelling park.
Vicki Lee Shelton, 61, was being held on a $1 million bond in reference to intentional and premeditated first-degree homicide Sunday morning on the Shawnee County Jail.
No formal expenses have been filed.
‘Intercepted the attacker and killed the person in hand-to-hand fight’
Baker acquired a Silver Star for valor displayed on Feb. 26, 1969, whereas serving in Vietnam, Folger instructed The Capital-Journal on Saturday in a cellphone name from her dwelling in Burlington, Okla.
Baker, who was a personal firstclass within the Marines, was collaborating on the time in a search and destroy operation in a dense jungle space, in line with his quotation.
Heavy small arms hearth and anti-personnel mines detonated by a North Vietnamese Military unit, which was occupying a well-concealed place, mortally wounded two of the Marines who had been with Baker whereas critically injuring two others, it mentioned.
“Reacting immediately, Personal First Class Baker boldly moved between the enemy and his fallen comrades and, benefiting from the terrain, commenced delivering hearth which enabled the rest of his firm to deploy into efficient combating positions,” the quotation mentioned. “When a hostile soldier attacked one of many wounded Marines, Personal First Class Baker fearlessly charged ahead from his place and intercepted the attacker and killed the person in hand-to-hand fight.”
Baker then returned to his coated location and continued firing on the North Vietnamese troopers, who quickly started a disorganized withdrawal, the quotation mentioned.
“His heroic and well timed actions impressed all who noticed him and saved the lives of two Marines,” it mentioned. “By his braveness, daring initiative and selfless devotion to obligation within the face of grave private hazard, Personal First Class Baker was instrumental within the defeat of the enemy and upheld the very best traditions of the Marine Corps and of the USA Naval Service.”
‘Underneath the kitchen desk together with his handgun, ready for Charlie’
Baker grew up in Alabama, then moved to Detroit earlier than going to Vietnam, Folger mentioned.
“Whereas others dodged the draft to turn into bankers, legal professionals and docs, my father left his roots as an architect and volunteered to enlist to go to Vietnam and do the nation’s bidding,” she mentioned.
Regardless of surviving his service in Vietnam, a part of Baker died there, Folger mentioned.
“He went to the Military a stable particular person and got here dwelling a full-blown heroin addict,” she mentioned.
Baker was recognized for psychological well being causes as being completely disabled due to PTSD, Folger mentioned.
She mentioned the VA Well being Care system let her father down.
Baker “fought his demons on daily basis,” coping with drug dependancy and flashbacks, wherein he relived his experiences in Vietnam, Folger mentioned.
“He was traumatized, and he traumatized others,” she mentioned.
Folger recalled how, as folks of their neighborhood set off fireworks every Independence Day to rejoice the freedoms Baker had fought to keep up, “he would take cowl underneath the kitchen desk together with his handgun, ready for Charlie.”
‘A hero’s welcome in Heaven’
Baker was a husband and father of 4, who’s fondly remembered by his household, Folger mentioned.
She mentioned her father loved fishing, writing, cooking soul meals dinners, exercising with Bowflex health tools and enjoying together with his grandchildren, whereas having them do impressions of him.
Baker moved a yr or two in the past to stay with one in all Folger’s cousins in Topeka, Folger mentioned.
Throughout his time right here, members of their household grew to become more and more involved about how a lot management Vicki Lee Shelton had gained over Baker’s life, she mentioned.
Folger mentioned Shelton and Baker weren’t in a relationship, however she did allege home abuse on Shelton’s half.
“He was a weak particular person, and he or she exploited that,” Folger mentioned.
Baker’s trigger and method of demise have not been made public. Folger is not certain she needs to know, she mentioned.
She shared these ideas concerning her father on her Fb web page:
“I hope you discovered the peace that eluded you on this life …
“You did not die over there however we all know items of you probably did …
“Sadly the federal government failed you if you received dwelling …
“Thanks for giving your life for this nation …
“I hope you bought a hero’s welcome in heaven.
Tim Hrenchir will be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 785-213-5934.
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