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Baker celebrates 103rd birthday in church

Hattie Bentley Baker, an Abilene Christian University alumna from the Class of 1928, celebrated her 103rd birthday with friends at the place she most wanted to be on a recent Sunday morning – at church.
ACU Today featured the centenarian in “One Hundred and Counting” in its Winter 2009 issue. David Rogers, minister of the Heritage Church of Christ in Fort Worth, Texas, reports that Baker and her family were in attendance Sept. 19, and the congregation treated her like a celebrity.
In the magazine’s Q&A profile, she talked about her reasons for attending ACU (“I had wanted to go somewhere to learn to be a secretary”), her major (sociology), her career (a school teacher, running movie theaters in Hillsboro and Pilot Point, working at General Dynamics, department stores and in real estate, all while rearing two children), and her faith. Her husband, Forrest Baker (’27) died in 1958. She retired from Ruckers Electronics in Fort Worth at age 80.
Born in 1907 in Lois, Texas, Hattie was one of 12 children and grew up in Era, Texas. While she was a student at ACU, the school moved from its North First Street campus to its present hilltop location in northeast Abilene.
To what does she attribute her longevity? “God’s will, I guess,” she said. “I never ate right, and I worked like a Trojan.”