Cornelius Bakker, 88

Cornelius Bakker, 88, of Valley Springs, passed away on Tuesday, March 30, 2021, at the Good Samaritan Society in Lennox. Funeral services will be 10:30 a.m., Monday, April 5, 2021, at Valley Springs Reformed Church in Valley Springs. Visitation with family present to greet friends will be from 3 to 5 p.m., Sunday, April 4 at George Boom Funeral Home & On-Site Crematory, Sioux Falls. An online guestbook and service live stream link are available at

Cornelius F. Bakker, son of John and Arnolda (VanDis) Bakker was born Dec. 29, 1932, in Beaver Creek, Minn. He was united in marriage to Arlene Brands on Feb. 7, 1962. They made their home between Brandon and Valley Springs where they farmed, gardened, and whatever else needed done. Cornie also worked as a custodian for the Brandon Valley School System for 12 years. Then he was employed in maintenance for 28 years at the Old Courthouse Museum and Pettigrew Museum in Sioux Falls. After he finally retired, he realized he couldn’t just sit around as he got bored too easily. He volunteered as an escort at Avera Hospital where he helped take patients to tests, admissions, and dismissals, and he absolutely loved it. In most cases if he didn’t know who he was driving, he made a new friend out of them. He did volunteer work for 13 years and totaled over 7,000 hours of service. 

Cornie loved being a big part of Valley Springs Reformed where he served on church council, taught Sunday School, and served as deacon and elder. Everyone that knew him thought that he was such a friendly guy and loved him to pieces. He always had a smile on his face.   

Left to cherish his memory are his wife of 59 years, Arlene, of Sioux Falls; daughter, Joan (Dean) Fischer, of Crooks; sons, Jeff (Mindy) Bakker, Sioux Falls, and Henry Bakker, Brandon; 10 grandchildren; 15 great-grandchildren; and numerous other extended family and friends.

He was preceded in death by his parents, John and Arnolda; daughter, Connie McDougall; grandson, Cole Thompson; brothers, Gerrit (Arlene) Bakker and John Bakker; and sister, Jennie (Walt) Burgers.

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