Michel found his true passion in life when he joined the Bridgeport Fire Department in December 2007. His determination and will to succeed gained him tremendous respect from his fellow classmates. He proudly served as a firefighter and was assigned to Ladder 11‚ which was stationed at Engine 7/Ladder 11 on Ocean Terrace. He was a member of Union Local 834 and a member of the Bridgeport Fire Department Color Guard.
Prior to becoming a firefighter‚ Michel was a dedicated and admired computer skills instructor at Career Resources‚ Inc. in Bridgeport‚ Connecticut‚ a non-profit workforce development organization‚ where he taught computer skills to the unemployed. He was honored by Career Resources on October 14‚ 2010‚ when they dedicated and named their computer center ‘The Michel Baik Learning Center.’
Above all‚ Michel was first and foremost a family man. He was a devoted father who participated fully in every aspect of his children’s lives. He coached JV basketball and was active in the Boy Scouts‚ chaperoned countless school trips‚ and sat through hours of school plays‚ sporting events‚ and dance recitals. His kids knew Dad was there when they heard his signature whistle at the end of every performance.
Michel was a lifelong member of St. Nicholas Antiochian Orthodox Church in Bridgeport and was active in many church organizations since his youth. An avid sports fan‚ Michel loved his Mets and Jets (J-E-T-S‚ Jets‚ Jets‚ Jets!). He played on the Central High School football team and on various softball and basketball teams throughout his life. He was a member of the Bridgeport Fire Department softball team. In October 2010‚ as a lasting tribute‚ his fellow teammates retired his softball number 15.
He was an incredible husband‚ father‚ son‚ and brother. He worked tirelessly for his family and found his greatest joy alongside his wife‚ Laurie‚ in raising their three children‚ Andrew‚ Thomas‚ and Margaret. A giant of a man‚ Michel had a heart to match. He will forever be remembered as a teddy bear of a guy who had a great sense of humor and a kind and caring heart.
On July 24‚ 2010‚ at the age of 49‚ Firefighter Michel Baik lost his life while serving his community and doing the job he loved so much.