Paul Ballard

Born: Sun., Jan. 2, 1944
Died: Sat., Sep. 15, 2012

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Paul Ray Ballard, 68, formerly of Birch Run, died Saturday, September 15, 2012 at Bronson Methodist Hospital in Kalamazoo. He was born on January 2, 1944 to George and Edna (Dotson) Ballard in Saginaw, Michigan. Paul served his country in the U.S. Air Force during the Vietnam War. He enjoyed archery, guns, engraving, model trains, and reloading ammunition. Paul worked as a train engineer for CSX for forty years until retiring in 2006. Paul married Vicki Schmidt on Dec. 29, 2000 in South Haven. Paul belonged to the Rod and Gun Club in South Haven, the Masonic Lodge in Birch Run and attended the Methodist Church when able.
He is preceded in death by his parents and a grandson, George Daniel Ballard.
Paul is survived by his wife – Victoria (Slentz) Ballard; his children – Jason (Victoria) Ballard of Davison, Michigan, Sharon (Frederick) Ballard-Warczinsky of Millington, Michigan, Shelby Ballard of Birch Run, Michigan, Shelly (Owen) Ridley of South Haven, Rachael (Noe) Guel of Bangor, and Christopher (Mindy) Schmidt of Ft. Riley, Kansas; seven grandchildren – Alexander Warczinsky, Alexis and Jenna Ridley, Elena and Josh Guel, and Caitlin and Makaila Schmidt.
No services are scheduled at this time. Kindly share your thoughts and memories on the family’s online guestbook at
The family is being helped by the Filbrandt Family Funeral Home of South Haven, 637-0333.

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Condolence Booklet

David & Judith Hunter
   Posted Tue September 18, 2012
Please accept our sincere condolences.

May GOD send down his Comforting Grace to your entire Family during this time of sadness.

With Love and Sympathy,
Dave & Judy Hunter.

Carolyn Murray
   Posted Tue September 18, 2012
Shelly and Owen and family,
Our prayers are with you. So sorry for your loss.
Carolyn and Candy

Timothy Butler
   Posted Tue September 18, 2012
Dearest Vicki, I have lost the best friend I ever had, who would do anything he could do for me. I know he is in a better place, sitting around a camp fire with, Charlie, Bob, Ronnie, and Don telling stories about Hunting, Fishing,and Guns. I feel lost without Paul and hope to see him around the campfire in Heaven. My thoughts and prayers are with you. Tim

Diane Vinoski
   Posted Tue September 18, 2012
Shelly and family,
My sincere condolences to you and your family. Paul was a very sweet person who was always there to help out and give encouragement whenever you needed it. He shall me missed. He was much loved.

Joyce Weber
   Posted Tue September 18, 2012
Vicky, Shelly, Rachael, Christopher and families,

My thoughts and prayers are with you in the loss of your husband and step-father. You have my sincere sympathy.

Joyce Weber

Becky Cook
   Posted Tue September 18, 2012
Sharon, Jason and Shelby:
I am so sorry for your loss. Many prayers for you and your family and may God walk beside you to guide you through this difficult time. Love from the Bearup family along with a lot of hugs.

Jenny Matthews
   Posted Tue September 18, 2012
So sorry for your loss. Prayers and hugs being sent your way.

~ The Matthews Family

Dave Wiatrowski
   Posted Tue September 18, 2012
Dear Vicki and Family,
I want to offer my most sincere condolences to all of you. I really liked Paul and enjoyed being around him, it was my honor to be able to call him friend. Paul, keep your powder dry my pistolero.

Richard A Harsch
   Posted Wed September 19, 2012
I enjoyed shooting and talking about guns and reloading with Paul. I will remember Him always. I am truely sorry He is gone. I will miss Him. Try to remember that God knows best.

Mike Cucinella
   Posted Wed September 19, 2012
Dear Vicky, Jason and family,
Paul was my South Haven Cowboy buddy. He lives on in my memories. Especially every time I'm reloading since he's the one who took his time and showed me how. He was a great man. I am very sad and I will miss him.

Bonnie Dykstra
   Posted Wed September 19, 2012
My dear friend Vicki and family, So sorry to hear of your loss. Paul was a very nice guy. Our prayers are with you and your family. Bonnie & Greg Dykstra

Lisa M. Bennett
   Posted Thu September 20, 2012
I am so sorry to hear this. I had no idea. My thoughts and prayers are with you all.
Lisa M. Bennett

Victoria (Schewe) Henry
   Posted Fri September 21, 2012
Dear Ridley family,

We are very sorry about your dad (father-in-law, and grandfather). Just recently losing the same patriarch the sadness is still fresh. May God hold you in his arms and give you peace and comfort.

Kathy Green
   Posted Sat September 22, 2012
Condolences to you and your entire family on your loss. You will be in my prayers.
Kathy Green

Brian Horan
   Posted Wed September 26, 2012
Paul will be missed at the rod and gun club he was fun to be around

Owen & Glynda Atkins
   Posted Sun November 11, 2012
It was difficult for us to find out that Paul had passed away. We are so sorry for the loss of this wonderful down-to-earth individual. Glynda and I have known Paul since the mid 1960s when we met at Offutt AFB outside of Omaha, Nebraska. We have been in touch off and on ever since then. We knew he was having health issues, and we both loved him like a brother. Our condolences go out to Vicki and the entire family.

Dennis & Sue Miller
   Posted Mon November 12, 2012
We are so sorry to hear of Paul's passing. We met during our time in the Air Force at Omaha, Nebraska. Paul was one of our close circle of friends and we think of him often. Our thoughts and prayers go out to the family.

Kerry Silver
   Posted Tue January 01, 2013
Dear Vicki, and the extended Ballard Family;

I am very, very sorry to hear of your loss. I met Paul at the SHR&GC in the summer of 2009, when I was working in South Haven, and we became instant friends. Being the warm, caring, and kindhearted man he was, he invited me over often. Anytime I was passing through town, I would try to stop in and visit, or just to surprise him with a birthday card. (I started collecting brass for him, as a surprise, but now...)

I so enjoyed just sitting with him, and talking, and learning from him, until the wee hours of the morning. What a sweet man, with a heart of gold! And how he loved his family. I never met you, but I know from Paul that you meant the world to him.

We stayed in touch via email, but when I didn't receive any replies for a while, I had a terrible feeling that something was wrong. I wish it wasn't so.

Please accept my sincerest condolences. I was honored to call Paul my friend, and my mentor, and I will miss him dearly.

Kerry Silver

Doug Clements
   Posted Sat February 01, 2014
It's been a year now since I talked to Vicki and found out about Paul's passing. We first met 50 years ago when I transferred to Offutt AFB, Nebraska. Paul and I were in the 3rd Weather Wing together there for two years. Most of us didn't stay in touch after we were discharged, but Paul located me in 2006 and we soon became good buddies again. We had many of the same interests, and he hadn't changed a bit. I was hoping to get back there and take a train ride with him, but he retired before that could happen. He wrote me the day before his knee replacement, and I kept waiting to hear from him, but when I didn't, Vicki gave me the sad news. He loved Vicki very much, and often talked about her and worried about her health. He is well described by those who wrote before me - kind, helpful, caring, and fun. Paul was just Paul, a truly great guy who would give you the shirt off his back. I miss our email correspondence and phone conversations about the good old days, and know he's left a large hole in everyone's heart who knew him. RIP, old friend.

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