Obituary in The Herald Democrat, Sherman, Texas Joseph 'Tony' Anton Baecht Jan 14, 2008 - 11:25:23 CST Joseph "Tony" Anton Baecht passed away a little after 2 a.m. on Jan. 12, 2008, at Wilson N. Jones Hospital. He was born on Dec. 30, 1937, in Grafton, Ill., to Myrl and Clarence Baecht. He graduated from Denison High School and earned his undergraduate and graduate degrees from Southeastern University. He married his true love, Kawatha Sue Sweet, on June 3, 1966. They lived together on a farm near Ravenna for most of their married life and had two daughters, Katrina and Kathryn Baecht.
Tony dedicated more than 30 years of his life to teaching mathematics everywhere from Beaver, Okla. to Denison. In Denison, he taught at Golden Rule, McDaniel Junior High, and Denison High School. Rarely, could Tony go anywhere in the Sherman-Denison area without running into former students full of thanks and fond memories. Tony also owned a motorcycle shop in Denison, a continuation of his love for motorcycle racing. Tony began racing motorcycles when he was 14 years old, racing all over the southwest and collecting trophies with his brother Bobby. Shortly after the birth of his first daughter, he turned to his other passion: raising cattle and farming. He was proud of introducing a new breed of cattle to Fannin County: Penzgauer. He was happiest on the farm with his cows and in the house he and Kawatha built near Ravenna.
He imparted a love of nature to his two daughters, Katrina and Kathryn, taking them all over the farm teaching them the secrets and wonder of various plants and animals. He also blessed them with a love of story, not only reading to them often as they grew up, but also making up stories of his own. He always encouraged them in their own writing and education impressing upon them the importance of striving to be true to oneself.
After the death of Kawatha in June 2005, the last two years of Tony's life were a struggle. He was beset with stroke, leukemia, heart disease, and related complications. Despite his deep grief over loss of his wife, he never completely lost his sense of humor or his love for talking to others. He made friends easily wherever he went.
He was preceded in death by his parents, Myrl and Clarence Baecht, his sister, Alice Holcomb, as well as his wife, Kawatha Baecht. He is survived by his daughter Katrina Baecht of Austin, her husband Dustin Parks, his daughter Kathryn Baecht of New York, and her husband Chris Voss. Also surviving are his siblings Clarence "Buddy" Baecht, Rosie Dixon, Charles Baecht, Bobby Baecht, and Nancy Richards. Funeral services will be held at 2 p.m. Tuesday at Mullican-Little Funeral Chapel in Bells/Savoy with interment in Fairview Cemetery north of Savoy. The family will receive friends from 6-7 p.m. Monday at the funeral home. You may sign the online guest book at www.mullicanlittle.com.