|11/1/2017 9:55:00 AM|
Gerald 'Jerry' Joseph Balling
Gerald "Jerry" Joseph Balling, age 71, of Bovey, passed away Monday, Oct. 23, 2017, at Grand Itasca Clinic and Hospital in Grand Rapids.
Jerry was born in 1946 to Louis and Lucille Balling in Windom, where he grew up and graduated from Windom High School.
He drove truck for Sunderman Transport in Windom until 1977 when he moved to Grand Rapids and drove for Simons Trucking.
Jerry enjoyed racing hobby, stock and sprint cars at Jackson Speedway and Grand Rapids Speedway. He also enjoyed hunting and fishing and had a passion for go-carts, woodworking, traveling and playing music.
Jerry loved his constantly growing family and giving the kids rides in Papa-Jerry's "Twactor Twain," and because of his love of his family, he truly enjoyed every family reunion.
Jerry won numerous awards for his volunteering, which he was very proud of, including the 2015 and 2016 Citizens Award for Itasca County and Meals on Wheels.
Jerry drove for Arrowhead Transit for many years and owned the Country Corners Auditorium/Music Hall in Deer River. He played in many bands, including The Legends, 'Tasca Country, Warba Jamboree, and the West Range Country Show.
Preceding him in death were his parents; daughter, Lila; two sisters, Donna and Betty; four brothers: Richard, Bernard, Maynard and Curt.
Jerry is survived by the love of his life, Nancy "Nanny" Childers, and her children: Amy (Scott) Danley, Angie (Bill) Bell and Michele Conrad; Jerry's three daughters: Lynn (Bill) Rosa of Fairmont, Leane "Duffy" (Mark) Courts of Mt. Lake and Laura Lee "Lori" (JD) Olsen of Cordova, Ill.; and their mother, Billie Jean Balling; sister, Colleen (Glen) Fisk; two brothers, Carol "Ole" (Vicki) Balling and Mark (Lana) Balling; grandchildren: Jackie, Heather, Cody, Skyler, Travas, Kyle, Harlie, Jack, Ashlee, Amanda, Emi, Spencer, Alex, Alyvia and Sierra; great-grandchildren: Jared, Angel, Jaime, Christopher, Liam, Lilah, Blake, Aiden, Meta, Dimitri, Ariana, Mesa and Brylie; numerous nieces, nephews, friends and other family members.
Visitation was Thursday, Oct. 26, from 1 to 3 p.m., at Rowe Funeral Home in Grand Rapids and continued Friday, Oct. 27, from 10 a.m. until the 11 a.m. memorial service at Rowe Funeral Home.Rev. Charlie Pratt officiated.
Burial was in Wildwood Cemetery in Cohasset, followed by a celebration of Jerry's life and luncheon at Trout Lake Community Center where everyone was invited to bring their instruments for an open mic/jam session in Jerry's honor.
In lieu of flowers, memorials preferred to the family, which will be given to the several organizations that Jerry loved volunteering with.
Arrangements are with Rowe Funeral Home and Cremation Services of Grand Rapids.
To sign the online guestbook or send condolences, visit www.