Daily Point of Light # 2990 Jul 21, 2005

Let your light shine before men. Each community has someone who helps the poor, cares for the ill, serves the church, supports community agencies and gives of oneself. Seldom can this person be found in one person. But the Mayville-Portland area has Marion Baker who fits all these descriptions.

Marion’s involvement in providing organizational skills for fundraisers for the local hospital, the Catholic Church, Mayville State University, and the Women’s Club, has resulted in numerous successful projects as a result of funds raised. Her time volunteering at the local food pantry and driving over 150 miles at least every other month to pick up foods staples from the North Dakota Community Action Agency for low income elderly people, displays her commitment to make all lives better. She’s also involved with Meals on Wheels and a local hospice for many years. One year she sewed and knitted numerous hats and caps for those in chemotherapy. She is involved directly with some Hospice clients, but helps Red River Valley Hospice in any need, including running errands, office help, special needs and fundraisers.

Often it is the little things that stand out about Marion. She is the one who volunteers to deliver gifts for the Catholic Church Ladies Guild and to the homebound or nursing home members at Christmas and Valentine’s Day. She is usually one of the first to help prepare and serve at parishioners’ funerals or weddings. It is the card she sends, the thoughtful word or surprise, often a handmade gift, to those who need that extra touch. Her sewing skills have resulted in quilts being given away when the heating went out at the university and quilts being auctioned off to benefit specific fund raising needs like Relay for Life and Luther Memorial Nursing Home Benefit.

It isn’t everyone who will volunteer their home phone number to take reservations for numerous community activities, but Marion contributes even in her ‘off’ time. They often say giving of oneself is the ultimate gift and Marion does just that not only by service, but also by donating blood regularly since her type is needed and is rarely donated.

In conclusion, many people wish to make some impact on those around them at least once in their lives. It is the rare individual who can touch the lives of the young and old, community activists and homebound, the wealthy and the needy and do so with a cheerful smile, never asking for anything in return. This is Marion Baker, our community Point of Light nominee.