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Balls, James C.

James C. Balls U.S. Army WWII
James C. Balls U.S. Army WWII

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Date of Birth: 3/27/1915
Died On: 1/9/1992
Street Address: 18 Cedar Pl
Service Number: 20219575

Veteran Code: USARMY-29

James C. Balls

James C. Balls was born March 27 1915 in Rye to William and Catherine Farrell Balls. His father was the Rye police chief. James had five brothers and six sisters. In Rye his family lived at 18 Cedar Pl and were members of the Church of the Resurrection. He attended local scholls and graduated from Rye High School. James served as an officer in the U.S. Army during World War II.

From 1940 to 1945, James Balls served in the US Army's 147th Infantry Regiment. James and the 147th first engaged in combat at Guadalcanal, where it took part in the assault on Mt. Austen. His regiment participated in the Battle of Saipan in the wake of the first landings to conduct mopping up operations behind the 2nd Marine Division, the 4th Marine Division, and the 27th Infantry Division. The island was declared secure on 9 July 1944, but Japanese resistance continued for months afterward.

Lieut. James C. Balls Gets Commission and Takes Bride

The 147th next moved to the island of Tinian to follow elements of the 2nd and 4th Marine Divisions as they assaulted through the island. The 147th rooted out stubborn Japanese defenders and continued fighting after the island was officially declared secure on 1 August 1944.

James's regiments next assignment would prove to be their most difficult; in the spring of 1945, they fought in the Battle of Iwo Jima. In the early days of the Marine landings, the 147th was ordered to climb from landing craft with grappling hooks to scale a high ridge about 3/4 mile from Mount Suribachi. The mission was to fire on the enemy opposing the Marine landings on the beaches below. They were soon pinned down by heavy Japanese fire, and engaged in non-stop fighting for 3 months.

The 147th would go on to fight in the bloody Battle of Okinawa, once again in charge of rooting out stubborn Japanese defenders who remained even after the island was declared secure. When the war ended on 2 September 1945, the 147th Infantry was sent home piecemeal, and the last men to return home arrived in March 1946.

James C Balls was a Rye police officer from 1945 to 1973. On June 12 1957 he married Mary Burdick in Armonk, NY. James served as a lieutenant in the Detective Bureau of the Rye Police Department and retired in 1973. For 6 years he served as an investigator for the Legal Aid: Society of Westchester in White Plains He retired from that job in 1979.

In Rye, James was a longtime member of the Church of the Resurrection, in Venice Fla, he was a member of the Church of the Epiphany. James was a life member of Post 8118 of the Veterans of Foreign Wars and member of Post 159 of the American Legion, and the Friendly Sons and Daughters of St Patrick. He moved to Florida in 1980. and was a member of the Elks Lodge in Venice.

James C Balls of Nokomis Pacific Fla a former longtime resident of Rye and member of the Rye Police Department died January 9,1992 of complications from surgery at Sarasota (Fla) Memorial Hospital. He was 78.

At the time of his death, in addition to his wife James was survived by four daughters Elizabeth B Murphy of Rockville Md VictoriaJL Marrm of Somers, Mary- Virginia Coleman of Ponca City Okla and Barbara C Lindahl of Tulsa Okla three - sons Dr James C Balls of Tuscaloosa Ala, Edward Balls of Gulf Breeze Fla and Robert B Coleman III of Grand Prairie Texas three -sisters Mary Kaynerof Pine Bush NY, Ethel Fitzgerald of Nokomis Fla and Edwina Greechan of Umatilla Fla: a brother Daniel Balls of Rye, 16 grandchildren and two greatgrandchildren.

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