Cover photo for Pearl Grace Baird's Obituary
Pearl Grace Baird Profile Photo

Pearl Grace Baird

October 30, 1927 — June 2, 2024

St. Johnsbury

Pearl Grace Baird

Pearl Baird entered this world in Sutton, VT, on October 30, 1927, amidst the tumult of a big flood in Sutton, Vermont, and exited it peacefully on June 2, 2024, in St. Johnsbury. She was surrounded by her two daughters, Linda and Janice, two of her granddaughters Lori and Jil, and her beloved sister Jean Fournier. The day was sunny, the skies were blue, and five bright-colored floral dresses hugged and kissed her to the final goodbye. 

Pearl was the firstborn of six children to Grace Flanders Ward and Earl Gordon Ward. From that first breath, she began to paint the world with her vibrant spirit. Pearl's journey through life was a testament to her resilience, humor, and boundless love for her family and friends. 

Her high school days at Lyndon Institute were marked not only by academic success but also by her trademark wit and a tendency to speak her mind. In her senior year cynosure, her most oft-mentioned line or retort was, "It's none of your business." Over the next seven decades, she continued to be known for her off-handed remarks, and her brazen sense of humor never wavered. Even in the final hours, she came out with some one-liners that had her audience in stitches. 

In 1947, Pearl married Everett Earl Baird. They met in high school and dated when Everett went into the service. She wrote to him relentlessly and expected the same level of committed writing in return. Everett tried. He wrote in neat, simple handwriting and ended each letter with, “Well, I guess I’ve run out of things to write about. But I do look forward to your letters. Love, Everett E. Baird.” In late summer of 1947, the Caledonian Record published of their Bridal Shower, “The rooms were decorated in yellow and white– prophetic perhaps of a golden wedding in 1997!”  Fifty years later the prophecy was fulfilled. After they tied the knot, the young couple bought Spring Valley Farm right for $8500 which included the real estate, farming equipment, cattle, and a pair of horses! Bathing included a trip up to Willoughby Lake to take a scrub with a bar of Ivory soap–as it was known as the soap that floats. 

That first winter was spent curled up by the fire at night and sawing wood with Everett in the kitchen each morning. Pearl gave farm life a good go, but straw hats, overalls, and manure were not her forte. She had dreams beyond the farm, dreams she would pursue and reach during the next several decades.

Her earliest dreams though, were her children. On September 29, 1948, Everett and Pearl welcomed their first child, Linda Pearl Baird. On November 21, 1953, Janice Ellen Baird arrived– not quite the boy they had hoped for. Both girls though, turned out to be exactly what they needed. Everett taught them how to work hard and use their hands and Pearl instilled in them her sense of fashion, her dedication to work, and her radical independence.

Pearl's career exemplifies her dedication, independence, and resilience. After her short-lived farming stint, she found herself in the realm of law, handling bookkeeping for Arthur L. Graves. She proved– not for the first time– her dedication and hard-working spirit. She spent two weeks rectifying a two-cent mistake in her calculations, demonstrating her attention to detail and her fiery determination. Although it took her by surprise, it is no wonder why Pearl was presented with an opportunity to double her salary elsewhere. However, Pearl chose loyalty over personal gain and confronted Mr. Graves about the offer. Initially resistant, Mr. Graves agreed to double her salary, acknowledging her worth and loyalty.

Her perseverance and dedication paid off when she was promoted to Assistant Trust Officer and Treasurer in 1961 at the Lyndonville Savings Bank and Trust, marking a significant milestone in her career. Over the years, Pearl's hard work was further recognized with promotions, including becoming Assistant Vice President in 1981 and the only woman on the Board of Trustees.

Outside of her work, Pearl fostered many hobbies, many of which she mastered. Pearl’s hobbies were expressions of her creativity and adventurous spirit. Take, for example, sewing. Sewing was more than a skill for Pearl– it was a labor of love. She poured her love into each stitch of the personalized quilts she made. Every grandchild was gifted a quilt upon significant milestones in their lives including high school graduation, marriage, and the birth of their children. The vibrant colors, unique patterns, and meticulous attention to detail made each quilt an heirloom, a symbol of Pearl's enduring love and her creative spirit.

On the golf course, Pearl found both relaxation and joy. Even into her advancing years, she remained a regular on the greens, swinging her club well into her 80s. Though her shots didn’t carry the same distance they once did, there was consistency in the way she struck the ball–100 yards right down the center of the fairway every time.

Cards were a cherished tradition in the Baird household, where games like Up the River/Down the River, 500, and High, Low, Jack, and Game were played with a fierce competitive spirit and a healthy dose of laughter. Pearl was a master of the cards, her sharp mind and attentiveness to numbers keeping her opponents on their toes. If she wasn’t the one keeping score, you better believe she could spot the smallest mistake or false calculation from across the table and never stumble to say, “Excuse me missy but you better check your math!” 

The winter months brought a different kind of adventure for Pearl, as she and Everett took to the snow-covered trails on their snowmobiles and zipped through the fields or on the VAST trails. Later they became snowbirds, spending winters at the Oaks Campground, but for many years they embraced the sometimes harsh and long– but always beautiful– Vermont winters by strapping on their cross-country skis or snowshoes.

Perhaps one of Pearl's greatest joys was twirling and swaying with Everett on the dance floor to the lively rhythms of square dancing. Those were the days when couples would drive to Canada or some small Vermont town to listen to the caller demand dose-e-does and promenade your lady round the back.

In every stitch, every swing of the club, every card played, and every step on the dance floor, Pearl's spirit shone bright, illuminating the lives of all those around her with wit, laughter, and love.

Pearl's greatest legacy, however, is the love she shared with her family. She was a devoted wife, mother, grandmother, great-grandmother,  and great-great-grandmother whose love of family had no bounds. Though she may have bid farewell to this world, her memory will live on in the hearts of all who were fortunate enough to know her. Wherever she may be, may she continue to paint the towns, roads, mountains, and hills with the same vibrancy she did on Earth…and may she never, ever stop doing it “her way.”

Pearl was predeceased by Everett Baird, (husband), Wesley Ward (brother), Carmelita (sister), Charmaine Newland (sister), CW Bitt (son-in-law), Douglass Solinky (son-in-law), and several nieces, nephews and close friends. 

 Pearl is survived by her two daughters, Linda P. Britt, and Janice E. Solinsky, and grandchildren, Billy (Michelle) Engleman and their children Rayne (Garret) and Devon (Gabby); Lori Robinson, and her daughters Olivia and Abby, and CW’s sons, William, Bryan and Shawn Britt;  Jil Blake (Christine Russell) and their daughter Sayla; Eric Blake and his children Cyrus, Lola, and Asa; Angela Britt and her children Kaiden, Neveah, and Amity; and Kurt (Regan) Solinsky and their four boys Kaden, Oakley, Copper, and Wilder. As of this date, Pearl has three great-great-grandchildren: Avery, Thomas, and Brian. Pearl is survived by two sisters Jean Fournier and Mildred, and sister-in-law Linda Ward.  Her friend group is limited as most of them have already moved on. Her caretakers and friends at the Canterbury Inn will miss her “sass” and making them laugh.

            A Mass off Christian Burial will be celebrated at 10AM on Friday, June 7, 2024, at St. Elizabeth’s Catholic Church in Lyndonville.  Burial will follow at St. Elizabeth’s Cemetery on High Street with Fr. Lance Harlow as celebrant.  There will be no calling hours at this time. 

            Memorial Donations may be made to the Burke Senior Meal Site. 212 School Street West Burke, VT 05871  

Memories and condolences may be shared with the family at  

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Past Services


Friday, June 7, 2024

10:00 - 11:00 am (Eastern time)

St. Elizabeth Catholic Church

630 Hill St, Lyndon, VT 05851

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Friday, June 7, 2024

11:15am - 12:15 pm (Eastern time)

St. Elizabeth Cemetery

Hill St, Lyndon, VT 05851

st. eli

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