Kathryn H. BALLEN obituary photo
 
In Memory of

Kathryn H. BALLEN

February 21, 1931 - October 13, 2016

Obituary


Amidst glorious fall colors, Kathryn Ballen of Denver passed away peacefully on October 13, 2016, surrounded by the love of her family.
Kathryn was born in Park City, Utah - "her Camelot". She nurtured many long-lasting friendships at Park City High School, where she was active in music, drama, and athletics. Kathryn attended the University of Utah on a scholarship, working her way through college. She majored in Physical Education and Modern Dance, with a minor in English. After graduating, she taught high school in Los Angeles. In 1957, Kathryn married the love of her...

Amidst glorious fall colors, Kathryn Ballen of Denver passed away peacefully on October 13, 2016, surrounded by the love of her family.
Kathryn was born in Park City, Utah - "her Camelot". She nurtured many long-lasting friendships at Park City High School, where she was active in music, drama, and athletics. Kathryn attended the University of Utah on a scholarship, working her way through college. She majored in Physical Education and Modern Dance, with a minor in English. After graduating, she taught high school in Los Angeles. In 1957, Kathryn married the love of her life, a handsome Croatian and World War II veteran, Emil "Mitch" Ballen. They lived in Chicago where Emil was employed as a civil/mechanical engineer and Kathryn continued teaching. In the early 1960's, they moved to Denver, when Emil went to work for Stearns Roger. The couple was blessed with five beautiful children. After Emil retired, they enjoyed many travels overseas, visiting several countries. They especially enjoyed Yugoslavia, where both of their parents were born. Kathryn was immensely proud of her Croatian heritage. Our dear "Kay" had a passion for hats, and she wore many throughout the years! Always a devoted wife, mother, and homemaker, Kay had various hobbies and interests. She was an accomplished seamstress and designer, establishing a small business with a loyal clientele. She spent several years as a nationally ranked salesperson for Tupperware products. Lastly, Kay became a licensed real estate agent for Cherry Creek Realtors. Kay was a devout Catholic, and she was a member of St. Vincent de Paul Church and Church of the Risen Christ. She was a tireless volunteer for the needy elderly at Little Sisters of the Poor/Mullen Home For the Aged, serving as their president for one term. Our gorgeous Kathryn was preceded in death by her parents, John and Frances Davich, her loving husband of 55 years, Emil, and five siblings. She is survived by her brother, Monsignor George Davich. Also, daughters Julianne (Rich) Eichler, Mary Ballen, and sons John (Linda), James (Jeanie), and Mark Ballen. Kay adored her eight grandchildren - Catie, Evan, Drake, Madeline, Rory, Ezra, Josh, and Aiden. They affectionately called her "Bubsy". Kay was a free spirit who had a spunky zest for life, and she lived it to the fullest! She was blessed with numerous friends, nieces, and nephews, who have delightful stories of memorable escapades! Kay's children will deeply miss their role model for loving, giving, caring, and loyalty. They will continue to cherish a selfless mother who inspired their creativity, work ethic, sense of humor, persistence, and resourcefulness. "Thanks mom, we love you!" Kay's family would like to thank Dr. John Burke and his staff at Rocky Mountain Cancer Center/Aurora, and The Inn at Greenwood Village, for their care and concern. Donations in memory of Kathryn may be sent to: Little Sisters of the Poor, 3629 W. 29th Ave, Denver, CO 80211. Entombment will be private at Mt. Calvary Catholic Cemetery in Salt Lake City. A "celebration of life" reception for family and friends will be held in Denver this summer.