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Wednesday, May 7th, 2014
Wanda Ballard
Wanda Carpenter Ballard, 98, Altamont, Ill., formerly of Mercer County, died at 11:45 p.m. May 3, 2014, at Lutheran Care Center, Altamont.
She was born June 7, 1915, in Mercer County, to Harvey and Pearl (Haney) Shimp. She married George F. Carpenter, who preceded her in death in 1972. She then married Homer Robertson of Cowden, Ill., who preceded her in death in 1986. She then married Ernest C. Ballard of Altamont, and he died in 2003.
She is survived by her sons, Tom Q. Carpenter, Bokeelia, Fla., and Dick M. (Carole Lawrence) Carpenter, Sun Lakes, Ariz.; a daughter, Rebecca (Ray L.) Adams, Tempe, Ariz.; a daughter-in-law, Joy Carpenter, Auburn, Ind.; 11 grandchildren; 16 great-grandchildren; six great-great-grandchildren; a number of stepchildren, stepgrandchildren and stepgreat-grandchildren; and a sister, Marilyn Craft, St. Marys.
She was preceded in death by a son, Jerry B. Carpenter; brothers, Nathan B. Shimp and Charles T. Shimp; sisters, Stella Wolfe, Bernice Cone, Zola Simmons, Edna Phyllis Simpson, Celia Beougher and Rita Groters.
She graduated from Neptune High School. She retired from Norfolk and Western Railroad (the former Nickel Plate Road), serving 20 years as a cook for a communications crew stationed between Cleveland and St. Louis/Chicago and Buffalo. She was involved in the creation of the Ballard Nature Center in Altamont, a 210-acre wildlife and nature preserve.
She was a member of Center Methodist Church before it closed and then transferred membership to St. Paul's Methodist Church, Celina, where she taught Wesleyan Sunday School for many years. After moving to Altamont, she was active with the First United Methodist Church.
She spent several years with her daughter in Arizona before returning to Altamont and becoming a resident of Luther Terrace and then Lutheran Care Center, Altamont.
A memorial service was held today at Lutheran Care Center Chapel, Altamont, the Rev. Willie Deuel and Nick Robertson officiating. Burial will take place at a later date at North Grove Cemetery, Celina.
Memorials may be directed to Ballard Nature Center, First United Methodist Church or Lutheran Care Center, all of Altamont.
Gieseking Funeral Home, Altamont, handled arrangements.
Online condolences may be directed to
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