Philomena  Baker


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Bangor and Hampden - Philomena Baker, 84, passed away peacefully March 23, 2019, at a Brewer healthcare facility after an extended illness. She was born June 6, 1934, in Odessa, Ukraine the daughter of Wasja and Philomene (Keller) Semenenko.

Philomena came to the United States from Germany in 1959, after marrying John Baker from Fort Kent, Maine. She established Baker Studio (photography) in Fort Kent. In 1970 she moved to Hampden with her daughters, and in 1973 reestablished Baker Studio. Over the years her gift of photography has captured the emotional essence of weddings, graduations, and life events for many families throughout Maine. Her talent lives on through her keen sense of capturing the moment through her camera lens. She enjoyed race walking and was a three time gold medal champion. In 1993 her race walking achievements earned her a spot in a Sports Illustrated article. Philomena was a Reiki Master and teacher. She treasured her time volunteering in the kitchen at the Bangor Area Homeless Shelter. Philomena felt it was important to give back to her community. Philomena also wrote a book with Kathryn Olmstead chronicling her life as a child going through World War 2. The book, Flight to Freedom was her dream come true. She loved to garden but more than anything her family, grandchildren, friends and pets, filled her life with joy.

Philomena is survived by two daughters; Debbie Baker of Hampden and her two sons, Nathan Baker and Marc Thibodeau; Grace Cater and husband Ron of Dracut, MA., sisters-in-law, Hope and Jerry Bates, Joyce and Wesley Hedlund; brothers-in-law, Don Baker, Jim Baker and wife, Editha, nieces and nephews, and extended family in Germany. Life partner, Moshe Myerowitz, Gail and Zev Myerowitz, their children Benjamin and wife Sarah, Zev Jr. and wife Amber, Daniel and wife Rachel, and Jordan Myerowitz. Great grandchildren Havi, Ellie, and great grandson Kai. Very special family friend, Lynne Lally. Thank you to all the wonderful staff at Woodlands Senior Living and Beacon Hospice for their kind and gentle care.

A Funeral Liturgy outside of Mass will be held 2 PM, Saturday, March 30, 2019, at Brookings-Smith, 133 Center Street, Bangor. Friends may visit with the family from 1 PM, Saturday, until the start of the service. The family invites relatives and friends to share conversation and refreshments at the Family Reception Center of Brookings-Smith, 163 Center Street, Bangor, following the service. In lieu of flowers gifts may be made to the Bangor Humane Society, 693 Mt. Hope Ave., Bangor, ME 04401 -207-942-8902 or online at or to the Bangor Area Homeless Shelter, 263 Main Street, Bangor, Maine 04401. Please include Philomena's name with your gift. Condolences to the family may be expressed at
Published on March 25, 2019
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20 posts

Allan and Pat Dow
Apr 09, 2019
Dear Debbie and Grace,

We consider ourselves blessed to have known your mother. She was loved and admired by so many people in Fort Kent. When my oldest child was born, she came to the hospital and took a picture of me with the baby and then gave me an 8x10 print. I also have fond memories of the night your grandmother Baker and I slept at your house many years ago. I was privileged to meet your other grandmother at that time. Both of them were so gracious and they made us feel like we were such important company.

Our condolences to all of you and may your dear mother Rest In Peace.i
Kathryn Sonderegger and Erin and Connor Greene
Apr 03, 2019
What a wonderful person and will be missed.
Missy & Tommy McCann
Mar 27, 2019
Sending condolences as you all endure this loss . Her spirit remains with you all ❤️
Gladys Bouchard
Mar 27, 2019
I had the pleasure of meeting philomena when she lived in Fort Kent, andher returned for her book signing June 1913. My most sincere condolences to the family.
Nedra A. Foster
Mar 27, 2019
I am so very sorry for your loss. May you all have a sense of peace at this difficult time.
Michelle and Dellana Kessler
Mar 26, 2019
So very sorry for your loss. Prayers of peace for your family at this difficult time.
Noelle Merrill
Mar 26, 2019
My deepest condolences Moshe. I know you will miss her immeasurably!
Linda McNally
Mar 26, 2019
Debbie, I'm so sorry to hear about your mom's passing. You were a wonderful caring daughter which speaks to her as a mother. My high school pic, taken by your mom, still hangs in my mother's house. Love to you and your family
Bobby Clendenning
Mar 26, 2019
My condolences to Debbie and Grace --
Sharma Wood.
Mar 26, 2019
Always had a good time when Philomena came into the store to find just the right item. Your memories will guide you along this journey now.
Jonathan Perry
Mar 26, 2019
Debbie, Grace and Family,

My heartfelt condolences to you all. Your Mom was a beautiful woman who enjoyed life to its fullest, and instilled that love of life, humanity, and kindness to you all. May the Lord give you strength during this difficult time. God bless you.
Lisa Mitchell
Mar 26, 2019
Debbie, Nate and Mark, my favorite memories of your dear mother and grandmother are that she never missed a hockey game or dirt bike race. She showed so much love for you all. She also took my high school graduation picture as well as many family photos for my family. She was an amazing lady. Sincerely sorry for your loss. Love to you all. Xoxo Lisa
Kathy Walker
Mar 26, 2019
We treasure our family portraits created by Philomena in the early eighties, with the birch tree on her lawn in the background. A talented photographer. Our sympathy to her extended family.
Gail Brown
Mar 26, 2019
So sorry to read of Philomena’s passing. I have fond memories of sitting on bleachers watching John Bapst baseball games with the Myerowitz clan and her vibrant energy. RIP Philomena💕🎈🎈🎈
Bernadette Gaspar
Mar 26, 2019
Glenn & My wedding was probably one of the 1st weddings she photographed in Bangor on September, 1972. She did some wedding cake photos for our family business, Franks Bake Shop. Sorry for your loss. She was a kind gentle lady. She is now an Angel looking down over you.
Dean Hesseltine
Mar 26, 2019
Debbie and family, sorry for your loss. Thinking of you all today and the days ahead.
Nancy Bergin
Mar 26, 2019
RIP, beautiful lady. I still have the lovely photo portraits that you created from my wedding in the mid-90s; they remain a treasure.
Don Lewis
Mar 26, 2019
Philomena had a remarkable talent for photography and was a person I am proud to have known. Moshe will miss her as will all her knew her.
Rachel Merrill
Mar 25, 2019
Debbie, there are no words that can lessen the loss but praying for comfort and peace foy you and your family.
Gail (Sumner) Thibault
Mar 25, 2019
I am so sorry to hear of the passing of Philomena. She was such a wonderful caring person and exceptional photographer. May she rest in peace.