In Loving Memory: Milton Jefferson Baldy
Milton Jefferson Baldy, age 86, died at St. Joseph Hospital Eureka, California on Sunday January 13, 2013. Milton was born on August 30, 1926 in Hoopa, California to the late Nellie Baldy and Maynard Baldy. He was married for 58 years to Edna Pearl Baldy who preceded him in death in November 2008. Milton was a lifetime resident of the Hoopa Valley Indian Reservation where he was an enrolled member and respected elder of the tribe.
Milton attended elementary and high school in Hoopa and was a veteran of World War II. In his youth he was a gifted athlete who played all kinds of sports and later also coached at the High School. He was also a devoted horseman who enjoyed riding and caring for horses. After returning from the war he worked for many years in the timber industry including harvest plans, contract negotiation, logging, roads construction, reforestation, and milling operations. Milton learned to run, maintain, and fix many types logging and construction equipment. Later on Milton was instrumental in the founding of the Hoopa Forest Industries as a fully equipped Tribal Enterprise. After his retirement, Milton continued to be sought out by Tribal Officials for advice regarding timber harvesting and other tribal operations and programs.
Milton was also a recognized speaker of the Hupa language, and one of the last surviving native Hupa speakers. Milton was an avid hunter and fisherman. His stories often involved tales of his adventures in the outdoors including the tracking of “tintah-k’iwungxoya:n” otherwise known as Bigfoot.
Milton built and lived in the “red house on top of the hill overlooking the valley” with his wife and their children and also opened his home to his grand-children, great-grandchildren, family and friends. In his later life, Milton was an active person who enjoyed the outdoors and could often be found tending to the roses and various flowers he grew around his property. Even during his later years he would often wake up early to perform daily calisthenics, stack wood, and visit with family members. He was an honorable, compassionate man and will be remembered for his work ethic, wit, strength and athleticism.
Milton is survived by his sons and their spouses: Steve J. Baldy and Lois Risling; Elton Baldy and Shannon Baldy and Michael Baldy, Sr. and Charlene Baldy all of Hoopa, CA; and his daughter Debrah Baldy of Sacramento, CA. He is further survived by his grandchildren Jeffrey Baldy, Eric Baldy, Cutcha Risling Baldy, David Risling-Baldy, Michael Hodahkwen, Theresa Addington, Brian Baldy, Aaron Baldy, Laurie Yalung, Shalene Turner, Sunni Ulestad, Michael Baldy, Jr., Carmelita Navarro and Falona Baldy. In addition he is survived by 34 great-grandchildren and numerous extended family members. Milton was preceded in death by his grandmother Mary Baldy Socktish, his father Maynard Baldy, his uncle Rudolph Socktish of the xontah nikya:w (big house) at Ta’kmilding his wife Edna Baldy, and sisters Winnefred George and Edith Fogus; and his brothers Raymond Baldy, Farrell Baldy, Valine Baldy and Newton Baldy.
A memorial service was held at 1:00 PM on Saturday January 19 at Milton’s home in Hoopa, CA. Milton was buried next to his wife Edna in a spot overlooking the Hoopa Valley.