Jim Ball, 88, passed away in his sleep after a long illness due to respiratory failure on Thursday, Jan. 24.
He is survived by Delores Ball, his beloved wife of 59 years.
He is also survived by a daughter, Joni Vogel; and four sons, Tammy, Billy, Jeff, and Terry, as well as five grandchildren and one great-grandchild.
Jim was born in Livingston, Ky., on Dec. 25, 1925, to John and Ida Ball.
He grew up in Kentucky until leaving to serve in the United States Navy in 1943 at the age of 17. He trained for the submarine service, but with his diving training was called to work in underwater demolition in Europe. He was part of the team that did the dangerous work of clearing the harbor in Palermo, Sicily.
After his discharge in 1946, he worked as a long-haul truck driver until 1964 when he moved his family to Lake Wales. He worked as a mechanic at Citrus World until being forced to retire with disabilities.
Jim was as a beloved member of Golfview Baptist Church, where he served in many leadership capacities, including deacon, trustee, and Sunday School Director.
A memorial service will be held on Monday, Jan. 28 at 4 p.m at Golfview Baptist Church, 107 Hibiscus in Golfview Park in Lake Wales.
The family asks that in lieu of flowers, donations can be made to Golfview Baptist Church.
Condolences may be sent to the family at www.marionnelsonfuneralhome.com.
Marion Nelson Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements.