Mr. John Stephen Bax, age 67, of Jefferson City, Mo., passed away Saturday, June 22, 2019 at SSM Health St. Mary’s Hospital surrounded by his loving family. John died of complications from Type 1 Diabetes, a disease he fought for 55 years of his life. He had a high quality of life until the very end and is considered a medical anomaly.
John was born on February 13, 1952 in St. Louis, Mo., a son of Clarence and Rita (Gerling) Bax. He was married on April 20, 1974 at St. Anthony of Padua in St. Anthony, Mo. to Marlene Buechter.
John was raised in St. Louis until his family moved to St. Elizabeth where he was a 1970 graduate of St. Elizabeth R-IV High School.
John always had a strong work ethic and started working with McGraw Edison out of high school for several years. He later began his job delivering and handling materials for heating and plumbing jobs for over 15 years with various companies that include: Capital Supply Heating and Plumbing, Central Missouri Plumbing, and Environmental Engineering. John retired after working for six years with Scholastic Inc. in February 2017.
One of John’s main passions was playing and watching baseball. He grew up playing catcher and played throughout his life on various teams and leagues throughout the state. Some of those teams had quite a bit of success and he was proud to be a part of the 1963 Missouri/Illinois Khoury League Championship Team, the 1964 Missouri Khoury League Championship Team and the 1980 and 1984 Osage League Championship Teams. John was also invited to several professional tryouts, but an even greater achievement was watching his sons succeed in their endeavors on the baseball diamond. He was always in the stands cheering and coaching them on throughout their careers. When he wasn’t playing or supporting, one of his favorite places was sitting on his deck listening to the St. Louis Cardinals, his favorite team.
An avid sportsman, John found peace being outdoors. He loved to fish the Big Tavern Creek, deer hunt, and quail hunt with his dogs. He considered his bird dogs family and they had a special place in his heart for the joy they brought him in the fields. With his love of history, he looked forward to hunting Native American artifacts and arrowheads in the bottom grounds of the Big Tavern.
John will be remembered for his gentle and humble demeanor who was content with a simple life. He possessed a unique sense of right and wrong which he instilled deeply into his three sons. John loved spending time with Marlene in their garden, being with his sons around the baseball field, and spoiling his grandchildren. His four brothers were his best friends and he cherished their close relationship.
Survivors include: his wife of 45 years, Marlene Bax; three sons, Brian Bax (Jessica) of Linn, Mo., Tony Bax of Jefferson City, Mo. and Bruce Bax (Brandi) of Jefferson City, Mo.; three brothers, Gene Bax (Cindy) of Ulman, Mo., Jim Bax (Brenda) of University City, Mo. and Tom Bax of Ulman, Mo.; seven grandchildren, Abigail Bax, Claire Bax, Macy Bax, Hannah Bax, Ryan Bax, Gabrielle Bax and Porter Bax; and numerous nieces and nephews.
He was preceded in death by his parents; sister, Kerry Booth; brother, Joe Bax; his bird dogs, King, Rex and Lady; and his favorite childhood dog, Ringo.
Visitation will be held at Freeman Mortuary from 4:00 p.m. until 7:00 p.m. Thursday, June 27, 2019 with a prayer service held at 3:15 p.m. in the Freeman Chapel. An additional visitation will be held from 10:00 a.m. until 11:00 a.m. Friday, June 28, 2019 at St. Lawrence Catholic Church in St. Elizabeth, Mo.
Mass of Christian Burial will be conducted at 11:00 a.m. Friday, June 28, 2019 at St. Lawrence Catholic Church in St. Elizabeth, Mo. with the Reverend Joby Parakkacharuvil Thomas and the Reverend Dan Merz officiating. Graveside services will follow at St. Lawrence Church Cemetery.
In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions are suggested to the American Diabetes Association, 2451 Crystal Drive, Suite 900, Arlington, Va. 22202.
Funeral arrangements are under the care of Freeman Mortuary.