The Obit For Bobbie Balch

Bobbie Wayne Balch

Published in The Herald Democrat on April 13, 2011

Bobbie Wayne Balch was born October 24, 1931 to Murphy G. and Mary Lena (Wester) Balch at home on Honey Creek between Celina and Weston, Texas. He died on April 12, 2011 at the age of 79. He graduated from Alla High School and then proudly served in the United States Coast Guard. He was one of only four Public Information Photographers in the nation during his service in the Coast Guard.

While he was stationed in New York City as a photographer, he once was hired to take the backstage publicity photos of Gene Autry at Madison Square Garden. After his service in the Coast Guard, he played baseball in the West Texas and Longhorn Leagues of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues and signed as a catcher with the farm club of the Cleveland Indians in Midland, Texas around 1950.

He met and after a 3 month courtship, married the love of his life, Bettye Spradling on July 2, 1955. To this union was born 2 children, Kay, in 1956 and Scott in 1957.

Bob became a custom home builder in the Celina area for many years, building most new residential construction and commercial construction including the funeral home and Chevrolet dealership in Celina during that time. He and Bettye retired to live at Lake Texoma in 1978 and spent many happy years together until her death in 1997. He was a man who loved people and never met a stranger.

He is survived by his daughter, Kay Goode and husband James; his son, Scott Balch and wife, Penny; three grandchildren, Brandon, Hannah and Haley Balch; two stepgrandchildren, Billy Turner and Robbie Goode Williams and four great-grandchildren. He will be missed by many other family members and friends. The family wishes to extend their thanks to his friend, Melba Erwin for being there for him until the end and also the loving care of the Victory Hospices nurses.

Funeral services will be held at 2 p.m. Thursday, April 14, 2011 at Turrentine-Jackson-Morrow Chapel in Celina, Texas with Reverend Gary Gibbs officiating. Interment will follow at Cottage Hill Cemetery.

The family will receive friends at visitation on Wednesday, April 13, 2011 from 6-8 p.m. at Turrentine Jackson Morrow.

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