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Wayne Ervin Ball, 91, was surrounded by his family when he left this earth bound for heaven on March 17, 2017. He was the fifth of eight children, born July 28, 1925 to Etta (Wendt) and Elmer Ball and raised at the family homestead in Briggsdale, Colorado.
Following graduation from Briggsdale High School and a brief deferment to bring in harvest, Wayne entered the US Army where he served in Central Europe during WW II. After his honorable discharge, he returned to the family ranch to work with his parents.
In 1947 he met Juanita Joy Witt, whom he married in 1950. Utilizing the GI Bill, he studied Agriculture at Colorado A&M (now CSU), graduating in 1954. Later that year, he began a distinguished 30-year teaching career in SE Weld County at Prospect Valley High School and Weld Central High School when the district consolidated. He directed their vocational agriculture programs, was advisor for the Future Farmers of America (FFA) chapter and taught auto mechanics and welding.
As FFA advisor, Wayne’s students consistently won awards and championships. He took an earnest and sincere interest in his student’s successes, earning the affectionate nick name “Chief.” Juanita and Wayne moved to Greeley in 1982. He retired from teaching in 1984.
Following retirement, Wayne worked for the CSU Agronomy Department, then as a crop adjuster, processing claims in Colorado and the Mid-West.
At the time of his death, Wayne was an active member of St. Paul’s Congregational Church.
Wayne was deeply connected to his family’s homestead and keenly aware and appreciative of his humble beginnings. The homestead, a Colorado Centennial Farm, served as a timeless source of strength and inspiration. He will be remembered by his family and friends as a kind man who kept his word and was generous with his time, talents and possessions. He will be greatly missed.
He is survived by his wife, Juanita; sons, Wayne (Beth) Ball, Randall Ball, Steven Ball; sisters, Erma Rich, Merietta (Andrew) West; sister-in-law, Verda Ball; grandchildren, David Wayne (Erin) Ball, Janey (Brian) White, Alyssa Ball; great grandchildren, Ellery Cross, Andi Ball; Cache Wayne Ball and many beloved nieces and nephews.
He was preceded in death by his parents, Elmer and Etta Ball; sisters, Harriet (Harold) Hilzer, Elaine (Wayne) Larson; brothers, Ralph (Rose) Ball, Wilbur (Martha) Ball, Roland Ball; brother-in-law, Al Rich and infant grandson, Ryan Wayne Ball.
Visitation will be from 5-7PM Thursday, March 30 at Adamson Chapel, 2000 47th Avenue, Greeley, Colorado. Services will be 10AM Friday, March 31 at St Paul’s Congregational Church, 1525 43rd Avenue, Greeley, Colorado. Interment will be at Sunset Memorial Gardens.
In lieu of flowers, memorial gifts may be made in Wayne’s name to “American’s Parkinson Disease Association” or “Alzheimer ’s Disease Research” in care of Adamson Funeral & Cremation Services, 2000 47th Avenue, Greeley, CO 80634.
Friends and family are encouraged to visit adamsoncares.com.