W. Don Baldridge, 93, of Centralia passed away surrounded by the love and support of his family at SSM Health St. Joseph Hospital in Lake St. Louis, Missouri. He was born on January 4, 1930, the son of Guy and Hazel (Fouts) Baldridge in Centralia. He married the love of his life, Helen Mae Barton on September 10, 1948, in Centralia and she survives him in Centralia.
Along with his beloved wife of 74 years, Helen Baldridge, Don is survived by his devoted family, sons, Kenneth Baldridge and wife Terry of Centralia, and Randy Baldridge and wife Gaye of Centralia; grandchildren, Ryan Baldridge, Renee Baldridge, and Melissa Siebert and husband Dennis; great-grandchildren, Dakota, Haleigh, McKaylee, Emma, and Hunter.
Mr. Baldridge was preceded in death by his parents Guy and Hazel Baldridge; his brother Guy Dean Baldridge; and his sister Mary Arning.
Mr. Baldridge served his country with honor in the United States Army, as a Sergeant First Class in Korea, winter of 1952-1953. He was then active in the National Guard for 4 ½ years. Upon his return home he worked as a welder for the Illinois Central Railroad for 13 years. Don later worked diligently to deliver the mail on his route for the United States Post Office in Centralia for 25 years, until his retirement. He was active in the community he called home, volunteering for the Red Cross’ blood drives. He was a member of the V.F.W Post 2055 in Centralia. Don was a member of Calumet Street Christian Church, where he and his wife, Helen were grateful for the friendships shared there. Retirement found Don exploring his passion for wood working. There was no limit to what he could create in his wood shop and his family and friends were blessed to be gifted the wooden toys he made. Don was the very picture of a man of integrity, possessing a strong work ethic, and enjoying every moment spent with his family.
A graveside service will be held at 11:00 a.m. Tuesday, January 17, 2023, at Hillcrest Memorial Park in Centralia with John Willis officiating. Military rites will be accorded by the V.F.W. Post 2055 and the American Legion Post 446. Memorials may be made in Don’s honor to the Calumet Street Christian Church or the New Horizon Christian School and will be accepted for the family at Irvin Macz Funeral Home in Centralia. Online condolences and memories of Don may be shared with the family by visiting www.maczfuneralhomes.com and/or on the funeral home’s Facebook page.