David Baldwin, 1948-2011

David BaldwinDavid Baldwin, who devoted much of his life to teaching Christian character through athletics, first became a believer through his interest in sports.

“Dave started coming to church in order to play softball on Monday nights,” recalled Dr. Robert Loggans, whose father, Dr. John Loggans, was pastor of First Baptist Church of Goodells, MI, at the time. “The players were required to attend two services in order to play in the game that week. Dave eventually came to know Christ as his Savior and became very active in our church.”

Baldwin (‘73), a member of Maranatha’s Board of Trustees, died Dec. 28 in Laingsburg, MI, of an apparent heart attack. He was 63.

Baldwin was one of Maranatha’s best athletes during the College’s early years and spent much of his adult life as a coach and Christian school teacher and administrator. He was still serving as athletic director for the Michigan Association of Christian Schools at the time of his death. Dr. Doug Jackson is MACS president.

“Dave was a tremendous volleyball coach,” recalled Jackson, Chairman of Maranatha’s Board of Trustees. “His teams always contended for the state championship even though he was coaching at a small school. I asked him to become MACS athletic director because I saw that he was a very good arbitrator, very fair. He was very kind but very frank. He was a great help.”

Baldwin spent his summers working at Trust Thermal in Owosso, MI, eventually purchasing that company and becoming its president in 2000. Trust Thermal specializes in asbestos abatement and building inspections, mold remediation, lead paint removal, and commercial flooring demolition.

Success in business led to Jackson asking Baldwin to join Maranatha’s Board in May of 2010.

“He had good business sense and a real heart for Christian education and Christian educators,” Loggans said. “He and his wife, Linda (Horton), owned a cabin in the Upper Peninsula that they made available to Maranatha faculty and staff at a minimal cost for years.”

Baldwin was a four-year starter at third base (Jackson was the shortstop) on the Maranatha baseball team from 1970-73. Baldwin was also a fullback and linebacker for the football team. During a 2008 interview, Baldwin said the highlight of his college football career was helping lead an opposing player to Christ during a postgame conversation.

“After we beat Milton, their best player came up to me and told me he had never seen a guy who would take hits like I did,” Baldwin said. “He wondered what was different about me, so I told him.”

Funeral services are scheduled for Dec. 31 at Immanuel Baptist Church in Corunna, MI.

Baldwin is survived by his wife, son, three daughters, and eight grandchildren. Memorial contributions are suggested to Laingsburg Christian School.