Mary Jane (Harper) Baumgarden was born in Harper, Missouri on November 27, 1930. Her parents were B. K. Harper and Mayme (Butler).
Mary Jane (Janie) was the oldest of four siblings. At a young age her family moved to Independence, Missouri, where her Dad worked on a dairy farm. They moved to DeSoto, Kansas, back to Missouri and then to Washington state in the early 1940’s. They eventually came back to Missouri in the Greenwood area and she attended Lee’s Summit High School before meeting Alfred Lee Baumgarden. She married Alfred on November 11, 1949. To this marriage was born two children Vicki Lynn (Hyke) 10-12-50 and Michael Lee Baumgarden 9-12-53. The family moved to Washington to be near Janie’s family. They moved back to Missouri in 1958 to a little town called Gerster. They lived there for three months until they found their homestead where they would live the rest of their days on earth. There was no running water and no plumbing in the new house but she did manage to do laundry by using a wringer washer and drawing water from the well. Janie was a devoted Sunday School Teacher, Girls in Action leader, and WMU member at the Gerster Baptist Church for many years. She influenced many young lives for the Lord. Janie loved working in the garden and her flower beds. Janie kept a journal of when seeds were planted and when it was harvest time. This is a valuable journal and will continue to be. Their garden was always a wonder. She also was a passionate pie maker. All would look forward to her pies where ever they went. Janie and Alfred had a lot of fun traveling. She has a journal of all their travels but towards the back of the journal it states: “God’s retirement plan is out of this world”. Later in their years, Alfred and Janie became especially good with dancing together. They were members of the Moonshiners Social Club for many years where they danced. She was loved by her grandchildren and great grandchildren and she so loved them.
Janie was preceded in death by her parents, her husband, Alfred of 69 years, and two brothers, Calvin and Stan Harper.
She is survived by her sister, Nita Peterson; daughter, Vicki Lynn Hyke (Earl); son, Michael Lee Baumgarden (Liz); grandchildren, Mellonie Mayle (Kelley), Nicole Camejo (Ian), Nathan Hyke (Becky), Rebecca Bohn (Bill), and Leslie Baumgarden; six great grandchildren, Caleb, Clara, Hadley, Mayme, Hunter and Savannah; numerous nieces, nephews and friends.