G. David Baer, of West Falls, a computer analyst who co-founded Computer Task Group, died Aug. 21. His family said the cause was a heart attack. He was 82.
Born in Buffalo, he was a 1952 graduate of Amherst High School and earned a bachelor’s degree in biology from Bowling Green State University. He also took graduate courses at the University at Buffalo.
After working as a researcher at Roswell Park Cancer Institute from 1956 to 1960, Mr. Baer joined IBM in Buffalo, holding technical and management positions.
Foreseeing a need for companies to hire technical consulting services as they began to computerize their data processing operations, he and an IBM account representative, Randolph A. Marks, started their own firm, Marks-Baer Inc., in 1966. It became CTG in 1968 and soon was the largest software development company in the state outside New York City.
Mr. Baer helped oversee the growth of the company, first nationwide, then internationally, until he retired as executive vice president in 1995. He retired from the board of directors the following year. He returned as executive vice president in 2001, serving for another six years.
On the CTG website, current president and CEO Arthur “Bud” Crumlish wrote, “At his core, David was a people person and cared deeply about all of our employees. He was dedicated to client satisfaction, and saw this as everyone’s responsibility regardless of their position in the company.”
A sailor all his life, Mr. Baer took his favorite vessel, Ursa Major, to the Caribbean via the Erie Canal and the Hudson River. Later, when the boat’s home port was in the Chesapeake Bay area, he hosted friends on annual charter trips to the islands.
In his 30s, he trained for a private pilot’s license, joined a local flying club and attained his instrument flight rating. He built a two-thirds replica of a P-51 Mustang fighter plane and continued flying into his 70s.
He and his wife also bought and renovated a series of farms in Western New York, Virginia and Connecticut, where he honed his skills at plumbing, carpentry, wiring and working in the fields, accompanied by a succession of his beloved dogs, which were mostly rescue animals.
Survivors include his wife of 60 years, the former Carol A. Long; a son, Jonathan D.; two daughters, Christine Baer and Wendy Johnson; a sister, Susan Potenza; seven grandchildren and a great-grandson.
Visitation was held Sunday, Aug. 26, in Kenneth Howe Funeral Home, 64 Maple St., East Aurora.