December 8, 2023

Christina Baker McKenrick


Christina Baker McKenrick, 65, of Seekonk, Massachusetts, passed away peacefully on February 14, 2023 at the HopeHealth Hulitar Hospice Center in Providence, Rhode Island, after a noble, twelve-year battle with breast cancer. She was in the company of her family, hand-in-hand with her valentine and beloved husband of 44 years, Ross.  

Born and raised in West Islip, NY, she was the daughter of the late Ellsworth L. Baker and Joan (Johnson) Baker.  

 Chris graduated from West Islip High School in 1975 and then entered Brown University (where she met her husband, Ross). Graduating with an A.B. degree in American Civilization, she then worked for Wright Type. She then went on to work for the Brown University Admission Office as the computer systems coordinator and then for the Brown University Management Information Services Department. After taking several years to raise her children, she returned to the professional world teaching math and science at School One in Providence.

 Chris and Ross were members of Newman Congregational Church, UCC in Rumford, RI for thirty years. Their children attended church school and participated in the youth groups there. Both Chris and Ross served on nearly all the boards and committees, notably Stewardship, Missions, Trustee, Deacon, Scholarship and more. In 2020, Chris and Ross transferred to their current church, Seekonk Congregational Church, UCC.

All who knew Chris know that she was defined by her sense of caring. At church, she was a very active member of the Missions Committee for years.. Her mission work at Newman led her to make multiple trips to Haiti with Daehler Hayes, Suzanne Swanson, and the RI UCC Haiti Task Force.

Her caring extended well beyond church. In addition to raising her children and foster son, she extended her heart and her home to countless extended family members and exchange students. Chris radiated her love and caring to everyone—and all reflected it right back at her.

Chris was also a leader in so many groups: Cub Scouts, Girl Scouts, Reading is Fundamental, Great Books and many school committees and advisory boards.

Chris’s favorite hobby was “playing in the dirt” (as her husband characterized it). This involved cultivating flowers, vegetables, shrubs, trees—anything and everything that grew in her gardens (and sometimes out of her gardens, much to the dismay of her husband). In short, her home and her yard and her life was full of plants that she loved and nurtured.

Chris brought many pets into her home from her youth onward. In addition to many cats, there were three family dogs which must be mentioned: Princess (Labrador mix), Cinnamon (mid-sized terrier mix) and her beloved SuzyQ (Chihuahua-Pug mix). 

Dance, primarily classical ballet, was an important part of Chris’s early life. She attended classical ballet studios in the West Islip area from a young age. This continued through her years at Brown University, where she also took modern and some jazz dance classes as well. Chris enjoyed recreational dancing with a passion and was often one of the first dancing at bars, concerts, weddings—wherever there was music.

Chris and Ross’s “Happy Place” is Briggs Beach in Little Compton, RI. Here they would spend many long days and evenings that would draw to a close with dinners, sunsets and campfires.  

Christina is survived by her husband, Charles Ross McKenrick also of Seekonk MA, three children (Scott McKenrick of Paonia, CO, Charles Ross McKenrick, Jr of Paonia, CO, and Mida Lorenz of Corvallis, OR), one foster child (Tanasith Martineau of Providence, RI) and two grandchildren (Ruth Lorenz and George Lorenz of Corvallis, OR), and two brothers (Richard Baker of Bel Air, MD and Andrew Baker of North Scituate, RI). Christina was predeceased by her third brother (Arthur) who passed away in 1996.

A celebration of Christina's life will be held on Saturday, March 4th, 2023 at 11 a.m. at the Seekonk Congregational Church, 600 Fall River Avenue, Seekonk, MA 02771. In lieu of flowers, contributions in Chris's memory can be made to a charity of your choice and/or one of Chris's many, including:

Arrangements are in the care of the Home of J.H. WILLIAMS & CO., 210 Taunton Avenue, East Providence, RI.

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