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Kansas Air National Guard firefighter dies of complications from COVID-19

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TOPEKA, Kan. (KSNT) — A Topeka-area firefighter has died from complications of COVID-19.

Forbes Field Assistant Chief of Operations Michael Baker, 52, died from complications associated with COVID-19 on Sept. 21. The KCK Professional Firefighters Association announced in a social media post that Baker contracted COVID-19 while on duty.

According to the post, Baker was with the Forbes Field Fire Department for 14 years and served with the Kansas Air National Guard. Baker is survived by his wife and three adult children.

According to Baker’s obituary, he was a resident of Carbondale and died in the line of duty after contracting COVID. He died at the Research Medical Center in Kansas City, Missouri.

Baker was born in Cleveland, Ohio, and received an Associate Degree in Fire Science while in the U.S. Air Force. He retired after 20 years of service in the U.S. Air Force and was currently serving as Assistant Fire Chief in the 190 Air Refueling Wing in the Air National Guard, as well as a volunteer firefighter in Carbondale for the last 28 years.

According to the obituary, a Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated Thursday, Sept. 30. Burial will follow at the Carbondale Cemetery with full military honors being provided by the 190th Air Refueling Wing.

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