Robert Michael Ballew
March 21, 1930 - March 30, 2023
Obituary For Robert Michael Ballew
Mike was born in Port Orchard, Washington, March 21, 1930. He grew up there with his Mom and Dad and older brother, Ted. He and his brother were active in Boy Scouts and both achieved the rank of Eagle Scout. After graduating from high school he joined the Navy. He served his tour and then the reserves during which he was recalled to serve again in the Korean War. He spent the war on an ammunition ship, the USS Rainier. When he came home he started his college education at Olympic Community College on the G.I. Bill.
He soon met his future wife, Marlene. They were married and moved to Seattle where he enrolled at the University of Washington. He graduated from the UW with a degree in accounting. He was the first one in his family to get a college degree. While there he became a father when his first child, Michael, was born. His second child, Linda was born 15 months later.
They bought their first home in White Center soon after and lived there for about 4 years. Then they moved to Des Moines and where they lived in the same home for over 50 years. In 1966 they had their third child, a daughter , Michele.
Mike loved to hunt and fish and eventually owned a boat which he kept moored in the Des Moines Marina. They joined Des Moines Yacht Club and loved going to dances there. Mike and Marlene were socially active and had many long-time friends They hosted many parties at their home. Mike taught himself how to make wine and which was loved by all! They also hosted many holidays for their 3 children and 7 grandchildren.
Sadly, in 2012, his wife of 57 years, passed away from cancer. Mike remained in the family home until he had a stroke in 2014. He then moved into Normandy Park Asst. Living where he lived pretty contentedly for 9 years and made many new friends.
He passed away peacefully, from various health complications, on March 30, 2023. He is survived by his 3 children, 7 grandchildren, 5 great-grandchildren, nieces, a nephew, and some cousins.
He will be laid to rest at Mount Tahoma National Cemetary near Kent Washington, July 7 at 1:00 PM.