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Walter Ball

It is with great sadness that we announce the passing of Walter Ball on September 23rd, 2023. We take solace in reminiscing about his remarkable life and the numerous contributions he made to our lives. Walter resided in a picturesque setting, along the Kennebecasis River, where he played his beloved piano until his last days.

Born in Fredericton, New Brunswick on May 19th, 1931, Walter was the son of Harley and Winnifred (Nye) Ball. He is survived by his wife of 60 years, Suzanne, and their children: Tzigane (Michael Caddell) of Rothesay, Conrad (Julie Maloney) of Lawrencetown, Nova Scotia, and Spenser (Jennifer Sinclair) of Saint John. Additionally, his brother Charles Ball of Saint John, grandchildren Zoe, Ray (Harriet), and Marley Caddell, and Patrick Ball, as well as nieces and nephews Lauren Upper, Jonathan Ball, and Chantelle Ball Gagnon, mourn his loss. Walter was preceded in death by his brother Kenneth Ball and his nephew Christian Ball.

Walter was a multifaceted individual who excelled as a musician, teacher, and community builder. Despite his age, he maintained an unwavering youthful spirit, always eager to learn and share his wisdom, time, and music. He received formal piano training at the Toronto Conservatory of Music for a decade and embarked on journeys across Europe and the Soviet Union, participating in international concert piano competitions. Returning to his hometown of Saint John, he dedicated himself to teaching music to countless students, firmly believing in the potential of every individual to sing and play an instrument. Walter understood that education extended beyond the classroom and encouraged others not to let formal schooling hinder their pursuit of knowledge.

Having established the Steel Band and served as the Executive Director of Festival by the Sea/sur Mer, Walter possessed a visionary spirit that disregarded negativity. His motto, “Ni bastori carborundum,” reflected his resilient attitude. During his tenure as a three-term City Councillor, he prioritized the arts and immigration, staunchly advocating for the exploration, respect, and celebration of cultural and linguistic differences. Walter instilled in us a deep appreciation for art, creativity, and the craftsmanship of handmade goods, exemplified by the 200 meticulously crafted rocking horses he made in his later years.

Above all else, Walter held his family dear and continually uplifted, inspired, and proudly spoke of them. His absence leaves an irreplaceable void that will be deeply mourned.

A visitation or funeral will not be held, but a Celebration of Life will be arranged at a later date. Further information will be shared on the Brenan’s Funeral Home website. In honor of Walter’s memory, donations may be made to the Imperial Theatre, Saint John Arts Centre, or any arts organization of your choice. Online condolences and cherished memories can be posted on the Brenan’s Funeral Home website.

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