Brian Timothy "Tim" Backer

Brian Timothy “Tim” Backer passed away at his home in South Bend, Indiana on May 29, 2022.


Tim was born at Holy Family Hospital, La Porte IN Dec. 28, 1960, the son of Drs. George P. and M. Barbara Backer and was baptized at St. Peter Catholic Church in LaPorte.


He attended the La Porte Community Schools graduating from La Porte High School in 1979.  He was an excellent student and received the National Merit Scholarship as a senior.  Tim attended Wesleyan University in Middletown, Connecticut for his freshman year.   The rest of his formal education was at Indiana University Bloomington where he graduated with a degree in English in 1986 and Indiana University South Bend where he received a Master’s degree in Music Composition in 1996.


Tim was hampered during his adult life by schizophrenia but received support from dedicated mental health professionals and his loving family.  Despite this handicap he had a rich life with his interests in music and the arts.  From early childhood he loved music and played multiple instruments including piano, double bass, and electric guitar.  His music interests were eclectic—classical and medieval music, popular music from the 1960s and 1970s and then electronic music.  He composed music throughout his life, producing CDs and later posted his works on the Internet.  He later began painting and surrounded himself in his home with his own and other artists’ works.  He wrote poetry throughout his life and published a small selection.  He was devoted to study of William Blake’s poetry and art.  While a student at IUSB he became interested in Chinese music and literature.  He was particularly interested in Taoism and found their concepts comforting toward the end of his life.


Tim never married. He was predeceased by his father.  He is survived by his mother and siblings Linda (David) Sirugo, M.D. of La Porte, Mark Backer, PhD of San Carlos, CA, David (Mary) Backer, Carlsbad, CA, and Laura Backer, M.D., Bellingham, WA.


Tim was buried in the Backer family plot at Pine Lake Cemetery, La Porte after a private service officiated by Fr. Gordon Kalil.  In lieu of flowers, donations may be sent to Indiana University Foundation IUSB Arts Fund, P.O. Box 7111, South Bend, IN 46634, or the National Alliance on Mental Illness, 4301 Wilson Boulevard, Suite 300, Arlington, VA 22203. or to the donor’s choice.


Arrangements have been entrusted to Frank L. Keszei Funeral Home, Essling Chapel in La Porte.

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