City of Oaks Funeral Home & Cremation

Clifford Baum

Chapel Hill, North Carolina

Age 89.
Died 05/29/2024.

Clifford Baum
Clifford Brantley Baum May 12, 1935 – May 29, 2024

Clifford B. Baum of Chapel Hill, NC, passed away on May 29, 2024 at the age of 89 after two months with Heartland Hospice. Born in Quitman, Georgia, he loved small town life and competed on his high school football and track teams. As a jogger for many years afterwards, he inspired his children to run track as well.

Cliff attended Emory University for his political science degree and Georgia State night classes for his MBA. At Emory, he met his future wife, Catherine. He surreptitiously learned her name in order to surprise her and ask her out. They would have celebrated their 65th wedding anniversary in June 2024. After getting married, he worked in the trust department for banks in Atlanta, Charlotte, and Jacksonville, Florida. He and Catherine lived in Jacksonville for more than 40 years, where they were active members of St. Mark’s Episcopal Church. Cliff provided the initial funding for weekly lunches for seniors at the church and also volunteered to visit seniors and to drive them to appointments.

In retirement, he continued his financial interests by researching stocks in new technologies on the internet, ranging from hypersonic jets to gene editing. He enjoyed sailing in the St. Johns River and traveling to beaches along the East Coast, including family vacations with his children and grandchildren. Cliff was known for generously sharing M&Ms with grandchildren, nieces, and nephews on these trips..

After moving to North Carolina to be closer to family, he enjoyed sharing jokes with new friends. As proud founder of the Durham Procrastination Society, he had plans to host their first meeting “one of these days.” Even with serious medical issues, he remained cheerful and optimistic, always saying, “We can cope,” when faced with new challenges.

After a private service June 6th, there will be a memorial service in August at Trinity United Methodist Church in Durham. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Trinity.

He is predeceased by his parents, Marian Baum and J. Brantley Baum, by his sister Patricia Baum, and son-in-law Will Gillespie. He is survived by his wife Catherine Baum; three daughters Catherine Gillespie (Will), Elizabeth Benson (Ted), and Laura Ketcham (Darryl); four grandchildren Joshua Benson, Zach Benson, Anna Gillespie, and Katie Ketcham; and sister Marian Russell of Sequim, Washington.

For additional information or for service details, please reach out to the family directly.

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City of Oaks Cremation and Funeral Home is a full-service funeral home in Raleigh, serving all of North Carolina and beyond. We provide an alternative to costly funeral homes and every day we help families in Raleigh, Durham, Chapel Hill and all over North Carolina make simple, affordable funeral arrangements.

Simply having to reach out to a funeral home can feel overwhelming. Our goal is to simplify the entire funeral home experience and make the process as easy as possible. We hope to eliminate any unnecessary surprises by publishing our total cost and the services we provide directly on our website. All of our obituaries are provided free of charge as a way to help families celebrate and commemorate the lives of their loved ones.

Our Promise

Apples to Apples

Just like all other licensed funeral homes in North Carolina, City of Oaks Cremation, LLC is regulated by the NC Board of Funeral Service.

The same laws that apply to the big corporate funeral homes also apply to the modest independently owned firms like ours. All crematories in North Carolina, regardless of who owns them, are inspected annually by the state and must adhere to the same rules and laws.

Genuine Care

We're committed to providing families within our community unsurpassed service before, during and after the time of loss.

Our staff will provide clear communication to your family through each step as we move forward from the original phone call notifying us of a death to the time we deliver the urn back to your family. We will treat your family with the utmost respect, as we honor the wishes of your loved one.

We promise to make this process affordable and as endurable as possible.

State Wide

Our Funeral Home is located in Wake County NC; however, we provide our services to families throughout the entire State.

Unlike other funeral homes, we don't charge an additional mileage fee. Regardless of what county you live in, we can help your family with making simple, affordable funeral arrangements. From Asheville to Wilmington, we're proud to help families statewide.

Our Services

Direct Cremation


Nobody likes surprise costs added in at the last minute. We guarantee you will not find any hidden charges here. We include everything you need for a simple or direct cremation. Simple, affordable and reliable. We have not changed the cost of our direct cremation service since we opened City of Oaks in 2012.

Cremation with Solidified Remains


We offer the option of choosing how you receive your loved ones remains. Selecting our Direct Cremation with Solidified Remains option is a beautiful way to transform cremated remains into 40-60 “stones” that you can hold.

Cremation with Visitation


City of Oaks Funeral Home and Cremation provides an affordable cremation option with onsite visitation. Nobody likes surprise costs added in at the last minute. We guarantee you will not find any hidden charges here. Simple, affordable and reliable.

Immediate Burial


An immediate burial has the same end result as a traditional burial; however, we have eliminated the extra (sometimes unnecessary) services prior to getting to the cemetery. Not everyone wants an open casket for viewing or a limousine for the family. Despite the term immediate, we can move as fast as you need or as slow as you like. This option simply allows you to save money by eliminating some of the fancy extras at the funeral home.

Traditional Funeral


We offer the same traditional funeral services as the big corporately owned funeral homes in the area; however, we cost about half the amount. You might consider a traditional funeral service if your family is looking for an open casket visitation, a traditional church service or a funeral service in the funeral home's chapel. A traditional funeral service can be altered to fit the needs of your family.

Green Burial


This establishment is one of a select number of funeral homes who meet the criteria for providing green funeral service by the Green Burial Council; a tax-exempt, nonprofit organization working to encourage environmentally sustainability in the field of funeral service. Our Green options allow for a funeral to take place without the use of toxic and non-biodegradable materials/chemicals.



As an alternative to traditional cremation, City of Oaks Funeral Home also offers Aquamation. The Aquamation process, often referred to as alkaline hydrolysis, uses a solution of water and potassium hydroxide to facilitate natural decomposition.

City of Oaks Funeral Home & Cremations