SUMTER – Ernest Wilson Baker Jr., 70, husband of Miriam Green
Baker, died Wednesday, April 29, 2015.
Born Nov. 15, 1944, in Sumter, he was a son of the late Ernest Wilson Baker Sr. and Lois T. Baker. He started his first business as owner and operator of a Texaco Station on Guignard Drive in Sumter at age 22. He opened his first used car business in the early 1970s. He moved to Manning in 1973 and started Ernest Baker Ford, which he operated from 1975-1984.
He also built the Western Steer Steakhouse in Manning in 1983, currently Yucatan Restaurant. He bought a Chrysler-Plymouth-Dodge Dealership and operated in Manning from 1985 -1991. He started a Mitsubishi Franchise in Sumter from 1990-92.
He started Adver-Sign in Manning in 1990, moving to Sumter, now known as SignWave. From 1992 to present. he owned and operated Ernest Baker Sales. Ernest Baker Sales was a well-known, trusted and respected business. A highlight in his car sales career was being awarded the quality dealer award by the Carolina Independent Dealer Association in 2002. He was a fearless entrepreneur and loved working with people. He adored his family and loved nothing better than to spend his time with them. He was an active member and deacon of First Baptist Church of Sumter.
He is survived by his wife; a son, Ernest Wilson “Ernie” Baker III (Celeste); two grandchildren, Ashley-Reid Baker and Adam Wilson Baker; and a sister, Sara B. Batten, all of Sumter.
He was preceded in death by a sister, Sylvia B. Frazier.
A funeral service for Ernest Wilson Baker Jr. will be held 3 p.m. Friday, May 1, 2015, at First Baptist Church of Sumter, with the Rev. Dan Barber officiating. Burial will follow in Evergreen Memorial Park cemetery.
Visitation will be an hour prior to the service at the church.
Memorials may be made to First Baptist Church of Sumter, 107 E. Liberty St., Sumter, SC 29150.
Elmore-Cannon-Stephens Funeral Home and Crematorium of Sumter is in charge of arrangements for Ernest Wilson Baker Jr.