Dedicated to Service from January 3, 1951
to October 1, 1993
A Biography Of Howard
R. "Buddy" Baker, Jr.
December 8, 1929: Howard R. and Evelyn Baker have a son Howard R.
Baker, Jr. at Hackensack Hospital. The child is brought to their home on Division Avenue
in Hasbrouck Heights.
1935: The Baker family moves to
227 Hamilton Avenue just across the street from the Police and Fire Departments.
September, 1935: Buddy begins
Kindergarten at Euclid School (K-8).
June, 1944: Buddy graduates from
Euclid School. In September of this year he will begin attending Hasbrouck Heights High
School (Franklin School).
1944 1948: While attending
High School, Buddy is active in sports playing 4 years of basketball, 3 years of baseball,
2 years of football, and one year of track. Buddy is also active in the Senior Chorus,
Senior Male Chorus, the Christmas Pageant, the Yearbook Staff, and Hi-Y.
September, 1947: While still in
school, Buddy enlists in the New Jersey National Guard 50th Armored
June, 1948: Buddy graduates from
Hasbrouck Heights High School.
July, 1948: Buddy begins work
with the State of New Jersey National Guard Vehicle Maintenance Division.
1950: Buddy begins working for
his fathers company Howard R. Baker Painting and Decorating.
December, 1950: Buddy joins the
Hasbrouck Heights Volunteer Fire Department.
January 3, 1951: Buddy is
appointed a Probationary Patrolman by the Hasbrouck Heights Police Department.
July, 1951: Buddy meets waitress Bernice O'Brien at Diekman's Confectionary Store on the
July 5, 1951: Buddy is appointed
a regular Patrolman.
March 18, 1952 April 29,
1952: Attends a police training school sponsored by the Bergen County Police Chiefs
February 23, 1953 April 2,
1953: Attends a police training school sponsored by the New Jersey State Police.
December 6, 1953: Buddy and
Bernice are married at the Lutheran Church of the Redeemer in Maywood. A reception follows
at Koenigs in Hillsdale.
January 13, 1957: Buddy and
Bernice have their first child Beverly Karen.
June, 1957: Buddy and Bernice
purchase their present home at 262 Hamilton Avenue.
1958: Buddy establishes Hasbrouck
Heights first police darkroom and purchases towns first police photography
March 2, 1958: Buddy and Bernice
have their second child Linda Diane.
1958: Buddy is elected to a two
year term as President of the Bergen Police Pistol League.
1959: Hasbrouck Heights Pistol
Team, lead by Captain Buddy Baker, wins the County Championship.
October 26, 1959: Buddy and
Bernice have twins their third and fourth children Sharon Elaine and Nancy
1959: Buddy is elected President
of PBA Local 102. His Local covered 20 towns with a membership of over 250 members.
1960: Buddy is elected State
Delegate of PBA Local 102.
1961: Buddy becomes active with
the Hasbrouck Heights Ambulance Squad.
1962: Patrolman Baker is assigned
to Hasbrouck Heights first Radar Gun Patrol Unit.
June 13, 1962: Buddy and Bernice
have their fifth child Carolyn Ann.
1962: Buddy is assigned to the
Detective Bureau, including juvenile cases.
1963: Buddy is presented his
Silver Life Membership Card in the New Jersey State PBA for being elected State Delegate
from February 9, 1960 to September, 1963.
June 1, 1964: Buddy is elected
Lieutenant of Hasbrouck Heights Fire Department Engine Co. #2.
September 4, 1964: Buddy and
Bernice have their sixth child and first son Howard R. Baker, III.
February 15, 1965: Buddy is
promoted Sergeant of the Hasbrouck Heights Police Department and is assigned to Patrol
June 1, 1965: Buddy is elected
Captain of Hasbrouck Heights Fire Department Engine Co. #2.
June 6, 1965: Buddy and Bernice
have their seventh child Alan Frank.
July, 1965: In addition to his
patrol duties, Buddy is appointed the towns first Traffic Officer responsible
for the investigation of traffic complaints and traffic surveys.
1966: Sergeant Baker is certified
as a Breathalyzer Operator.
1966: Sergeant Baker, under the
direction of Chief "Hap" Carty, purchases a 3M Traffic Sign Applicator to save
the Borough money. Over a four year period, he will make over 900 signs.
September 8, 1966: Buddy becomes
an Exempt Member of the New Jersey State Firemans Association.
January 5, 1967: Buddy and
Bernice have their eighth (and last!!) child Diane Gail.
June 1, 1967: Buddy is appointed
Mechanic of Hasbrouck Heights Fire Department Engine Co. #2.
January 1, 1970: Buddy is
promoted to Lieutenant of the Hasbrouck Heights Police Department.
January, 1970: Lieutenant Baker
places in operation the Boroughs first Record Room.
June 22, 1971: Buddy is promoted
to Captain of the Hasbrouck Heights Police Department.
1971: Buddy coordinates the
Topics Traffic Light Study to cover the installation of new traffic lights within the
Borough through State and Federal grants.
1972: Buddy is presented his
Silver Life Membership Card in Bergen County PBA Local 102 for 20 years of service.
June 1, 1973: Buddy is elected 2nd
Assistant Chief of the Hasbrouck Heights Fire Department along with Chief Jack Ball and 1st
Assistant Chief Bob Guarnella.
September 1, 1973: Buddy is
promoted to Deputy Chief of the Hasbrouck Heights Police Department.
January 1, 1975: Buddy is
appointed Acting Chief of the Hasbrouck Heights Police Department.
1975: Buddy establishes the
Hasbrouck Heights Traffic Bureau and assigns Lieutenant Gerry Dommenge as Traffic Officer.
1975: Buddy reorganizes the
Juvenile Bureau structure and institutes the Youth Guidance Council and Juvenile
Conference Committee with the assistance of Captain Robert Ramsey.
September 23, 1975: Buddy is
appointed Chief of the Hasbrouck Heights Police Department.
March 8, 1976: Buddy establishes
the first 911 system in Bergen County with assistance from Commissioner Ken Mathis, Police
Commissioner Rico Pagliei and Borough Clerk Robert Rafford.
1978: Renovates the Police Desk
area and purchases new radio equipment for the desk and in the patrol cars with the
assistance of Captain Joe Aversa.
1981: Oversees the purchase of
the SPEN Radio System and the MARS Computer System.
February 7, 1982: Buddy and
Bernice become first time grandparents with the birth of grandson David Shaun.
1984: Buddy is appointed Deputy
Emergency Management Coordinator of Hasbrouck Heights.
November 17, 1984: Hasbrouck
Heights Fire Department Engine Co. #2 honors Buddy for 25 years of service.
1985: Honored by PBA Local #102
with his Gold Life Membership Card.
1985: Receives the Hasbrouck
Heights Mens Association. Outstanding Service Award for his efforts toward the
betterment of civil affairs.
1985: Receives a citation from
the New Jersey Senate for being selected Outstanding Citizen of Hasbrouck Heights for his
many years of dedicated service.
May 19, 1986: Buddy and Bernice
become second time grandparents with the birth of grandson Steven Eric.
August 29, 1986: Buddy and
Bernice become third time grandparents with the birth of granddaughter Kimberly Erin.
September 14, 1987: Buddy and
Bernice become fourth time grandparents with the birth of granddaughter Amanda Lindsay.
1988: Organizes and drafts the
extensive Borough of Hasbrouck Heights Emergency Operations Plan with Captain Bruce Werner
and Emergency Management Coordinator Dr. Roger Szanto.
May 25, 1988: Buddy and Bernice
become fifth time grandparents with the birth of granddaughter Taryn Nicole.
1989: Establishes the Hasbrouck
Heights DARE Program in the Borough schools and assigns Lieutenant Edwark Chermark to
teach the program and Captain Bruce Werner to coordinate all snap agreements and
activities. The program has grown over the years and three additional officers are now
also qualified to teach DARE.
May 31, 1989: Buddy receives the
Chiefs Achievement Award from the Bergen County Police Chiefs Association in
recognition of the service performed in keeping with the highest traditions of the police
profession and for his work with the Juvenile Officers Association.
1990: Establishes and negotiates
the first Hasbrouck Heights Police Department rules and regulations, with the assistance
of Captain Bruce Werner. These rules were authorized, approved, and placed into effect by
Police Commissioner Andrew Link on November 26, 1991.
1990: Institutes the LIERS
Reporting System and Departmental Computer System. Purchases and has installed a new CCTV
for the police entrance and cell block.
1990: Oversees the purchase of
new radar units.
July 3, 1990: Buddy and Bernice
become sixth time grandparents with the birth of granddaughter Taylor Louise.
1990: Buddy is appointed the E911
Coordinator to implement the new emergency 911 system with the Borough.
1991: Institutes the application
and implementation of MDT (Mobile Data Terminals) in Headquarters and patrol cars to
provide instant access to DMV, NCIC, and MARS records.
February 13, 1992: Buddy and
Bernice become seventh time grandparents with the birth of grandson Ryan Howard.
October 7, 1992: Buddy and
Bernice become eighth time grandparents with the birth of grandson Kevin Thomas.
January 11, 1993: Buddy is
honored by the Bergen County Juvenile Officers Association in appreciation of his services
as liaison and representative for the Bergen County Police Chiefs Association from 1987 to
October 1, 1993: Buddy will
officially retire from the Hasbrouck Heights Police Department after 42 years and 9 months
Note: During the Chiefs
years of service, there were several violent and serious criminal cases. Out of respect to
the families of those victims, Chief Baker has requested that the Police Department
investigations and prosecutions of these cases be omitted from his biography.
Over the years, Howard R.
"Buddy" Baker, Jr. has been involved as a member of the following organizations:
Hasbrouck Heights Police
Department (42 years, 9 months)
Hasbrouck Heights Fire Department
Hasbrouck Heights Fire Department
Bergen County Police Chiefs
New Jersey State Association of
International Association of
National Police Chiefs
State Delegate of PBA Local #102
PBA Local #102 (Life Gold Member)
Bergen Police Pistol League
(Fired in competition for 25 years Buddy once fired a perfect score of 300 for the
Hasbrouck Heights Firemans Relief
New Jersey State Firemans
Association (Life Member)
Bergen--Passaic Exempt Firemans
League (Life Member)
New Jersey Exempt Firemans
Association (Life Member)
New JerseyNew York
Volunteer Firemans Association (Life Member)
South Bergen Fire Chiefs Aid
Association (Life Member)
New Jersey State Fire Chiefs
Hasbrouck Heights Exempt Firemans
Hasbrouck Heights Emergency Squad
Hasbrouck Heights Ambulance Squad
Hasbrouck Heights Band Parents
Boy Scout Troop 68
Hasbrouck Heights Cub Scouts
Hasbrouck Heights Little League
Hasbrouck Heights Planning Board
The Salvation Army
Bergen County PBA Mutual Aid
Society (Life Member)
Family Photos Career Photos
Message from Chief Baker
Record Obituary Shopper
Obituary Funeral Procession