Cover photo for Nikita Carol Baird's Obituary
Nikita Carol Baird Profile Photo
1947 Niki 2024

Nikita Carol Baird

January 4, 1947 — May 2, 2024


Our beautiful and talented mother, Nikita Carol Farris Baird died on May 2, 2024, in Independence, Missouri.

Niki was born January 4, 1947, in Neodasha, Kansas, to Mary June (Barfoot) and O.B. “Hap” Farris.   Her father heard the name “Nikita” while serving in the U.S. Army in France during WWII and gave this charming name to their little girl, setting the stage for her lifelong love of all things French.  She was an only child but grew up so close to her first cousins Victoria Sue Davis and Ronald Lee Davis that they considered themselves siblings and best friends.  

Her family moved to Independence, Missouri when she was very young, and she lived there most of her life.  She married Russel W. Baird in 1967, and had two children, Aimee and Jason.  Her second husband was Montie Hazen, whom she married in 2017 and lost to illness shortly after.

Niki is survived by her daughter Aimee Baird (Mark Culver) of Kamuela, HI; son Jay Baird of Blue Springs, MO; grandsons Collin Baird and Jason Baird, and great-grandson Aiden Baird.

She graduated from William Chrisman High School in 1964.  She earned a Certified Professional Secretary certificate from the University of Missouri-Kansas City.  Much of her working years were spent in the movie theater construction industry, including AMC Theatres national headquarters in Kansas City, MO, where she ultimately became the Director of Purchasing, using her creative talents to select the color palettes and materials that were used in nearly every AMC theater in the country in the 1990’s.  She later worked for other companies in the same industry and loved the opportunity to travel nationwide during that time.

Niki was deeply creative throughout her life.  She was a dancer from a young age, from studio classes and her school stage and to competitions and teaching, and never passed up a chance to get out on the dance floor even in her later years.  She enjoyed many kinds of music and almost always had something playing in the background.   She loved going to see live music with Jay and going to the ballet with Aimee. She had a keen eye for design and in recent years was a prolific jewelry-maker, selling her creations at local craft shows and making custom pieces for family and friends.  She painted, played piano, collected antiques, created miniature scenes, researched family genealogy, and baked amazing povitica.   

We would like to express our gratitude to the staff of The Groves Care Center and One Community Hospice for their gentle care of our mother and their kind support of our family in her last days.

We plan to hold a Celebration of Life this summer and will post details here.  

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Nikita Carol Baird, please visit our flower store.


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