Stephanie Vail

Stephanie Baker Vail

1958 - 2024

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Obituary of Stephanie Baker Vail

Stephanie Baker Vail passed away Monday, May 20, 2024.  She was 65 years old and died peacefully in her sleep after a hard-fought battle with a terminal illness. 
Baker was born in Caldwell, New Jersey. Her parents were Clinton R. and Lois M. Vail. She attended Drew University in New Jersey and completed her Bachelor of Fine Arts at the School of Visual Arts in New York City.  She had a successful photography studio and career in Manhattan for years and shot still life photos for many magazines, including New York Magazine, Vogue and GQ.  The country living bug bit her and she closed up her NYC studio and moved to a farm in Pennsylvania where she could indulge her love of animals and gardening.  This was the source of inspiration for her children’s book, Banjo Saves the Day, about her favorite rooster.
Baker taught herself computers and built a successful career as a map illustrator and graphic designer, working for many advertising agencies, museums, and private commissions.  She was an avid adventurer who held a deep regard for all forms of beauty.  She enjoyed traveling, gardening, cooking, reading and spending time with friends and family.  Laughter and simple pleasures were vital nutrients for her.  She loved conversations and will be remembered for her intelligence, wit and compassion.  
Baker was preceded in death by her parents, and is survived by her loving wife, Suzanne Small, many nephews and a niece, amazing friends, her loyal animals and many trees and gardens.

A Celebration of Baker’s Life will be held at 1:00pm on Saturday, June 29, 2024, in Iowa City, IA at Gay & Ciha Funeral and Cremation Service. In lieu of flowers, please consider donations to Iowa City Hospice, The Mayo Clinic (Rochester, MN), or the World Wildlife Foundation.


Celebration of Life

1:00 pm
Saturday, June 29, 2024
Gay & Ciha Funeral and Cremation
2720 Muscatine Ave
Iowa City, Iowa, United States