John Julius Balanda, 77, of Escanaba and formerly of Chicago, passed away on Tuesday, December 15, 2015 at U.P. Health Systems – Marquette.
John was born to parents Victor and Frances (Stockus) Balanda on June 11, 1938 in Chicago, IL. He grew up in Chicago, was the youngest of four and attended St. Rita High School. He received an Associate’s Degree from Daley College.
John was a corporal in the U.S. Marine Corp and was honorably discharged on November 20, 1959.
In 1963 he married Judy Dispensa in Chicago. The couple had three children.
John was a production planner for Zenith Electronics until his retirement. He was a life-long volunteer serving as a Little League coach, a neighborhood civic officer, and food pantry volunteer. After retirement, he and his wife moved to the Upper Peninsula of Michigan and settled on the Stonington Peninsula. He volunteered as a financial officer at the St. Vincent de Paul Society of Gladstone, MI.
John is survived by his wife, Judy; children, Jeannie (Edwin) McLachlan of Berwyn, IL, Jeff (Rosemary McNiff) Balanda of Roselle, IL, and Jill of Livingston, MT; his sister, Victoria Waliczek of Willowbrook, IL; four grandchildren; three step-grandchildren; and three step-great grandchildren.
He was preceded in death by his parents; sister, Mary Kincius; and brother, Victor.
Visitation will be on Saturday, December 19th from 9 – 11:30 a.m. at the Crawford Funeral Home in Escanaba. The Delta County Veterans Council will have military rites at 10:30 a.m. The Mass of Christian Burial will follow at 12 noon at St. Joseph and St. Patrick Church in Escanaba with Rev. Eric Olson officiating. A meal will follow the service in the church hall.
A memorial service and burial will be planned at a later date in Chicago.
In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to the St. Vincent de Paul Society of Gladstone.
The Crawford Funeral Homes are assisting the Balanda family with services.