Lowndes Middle School principal passes away

The Lowndes community and school system are grieving the loss of an amazing man this week.

Lowndes Middle School principal and athletic director Toriano Baker passed away this week. As graduation activities are in full swing, Baker’s death reminds everyone how quickly life changes and appreciate each day. He suffered a stroke two weeks before his death.

The Lowndes County Schools are expressing their sympathy for the caring man they knew as Principal Baker.

“Our hearts are hurting, and words just cannot express the loss we are feeling knowing that we will not get to see your smiling face again,” wrote Lowndes County Head Start. “Coach Toriano Baker, we are truly going to miss your presence.”

“The faculty and staff of Central High School sends sincere condolences to Principal Toriano Baker’s family. He will be missed.” (Central High School)

“The Central Elementary School Staff extends our heartfelt condolences to Mr. Bakers Family and our Lowndes County Family. He will be truly missed!”

Baker was not only a principal; he was a classroom instructor, basketball and football coach, and athletic director. Others would add inspirer of dreams, friend, encourager, hard worker, and child of God to that list.

With over 21 years in his education career, Baker wore many hats throughout his career and touched many hearts. He taught at Lowndes Middle School, Lee High School in Montgomery, and Central High School as a physical education teacher for thirteen years. He served as athletic director at Central High School for six years and then moved to a principal assistant position and then principal. After three years as a principal with Central, Baker transitioned to Lowndes Middle School and continued his administrative career. Baker also coached athletics for more than 15 years.

“I am a proud native of Lowndes County, where I graduated from The Calhoun High School. I am honored to work in the community where I was raised as an educator,” Baker said in his biography. “It has been my desire to set the expectation for our children to be a beacon of light that shines brightly amongst other school districts. It has always been my belief that hard work pays off.”

Baker was also an active member at Beulah Baptist Church in Montgomery and served on their Board of Trustees, president of the Beulah Laymen, and co-taught the Intermediate Sunday School class with his wife, Kimberly Baker.