YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio - Donald Balser, 87, formerly of Austintown, passed away peacefully just after midnight Friday morning, November 17, 2017 at St. Elizabeth Health Center in Youngstown.
Donald was born November 12, 1930 in Youngstown, a son of the late Raymond R. and Ethel Mellinger Balser and lived most of his life in the area.
Mr. Balser attended West High School in Akron and was a 1948 graduate of Austintown Fitch High School.
Don played football, basketball and baseball at Fitch and was a member of the class that determined that "Falcons" would be the school mascot and nickname.
He also graduated from Youngstown College in 1954 with a degree in journalism and subsequently served in the U.S. Army from 1956 to 1958.
Don worked for 27 years for Youngstown Sheet and Tube, retiring when the mill closed.
He was an enthusiastic sports and NASCAR fan and he played many years for local sandlot and softball teams. Don also participated in the Senior Olympics for 17 years and was a charter member of the famed Austintown Men's Volleyball League, where he was known as "Big Don" Balser.
Donald leaves a cousin, Mae V. Cumiskey of Sea Girt, New Jersey and many devoted friends throughout the area.
Don was preceded in death by two infant brothers.
Family and friends may gather from 6:00 - 7:00 p.m. Tuesday, November 21 at Kinnick Funeral Home, 477 N. Meridian Road, Youngstown, for a celebration of Don's life.
Interment will take place at Tod Homestead Cemetery in Youngstown, where Don will be laid to rest with his family.
Visit kinnickfuneralhome.com to send condolences online to Donald's family.
A television tribute will air Monday, November 20 at the following approximate times:
12:25 p.m. WKBN, 6:58 p.m. on MyYTV and 10:37 p.m. FOX plus two additional spots throughout the day.