JAMES "CLAUDE" BALL, 87, of Ripley passed away Wednesday, January 20, 2021, at Camden Clark Medical Center following a short illness. He was born July 3, 1933, at Hewett, W.Va., a son of the late Wilmer and Elma Elkins Ball. Claude proudly served his country in the U.S. Army in the Korean War from 1953-1955. He retired from Century Aluminum as a yard equipment operator with 37 years of service. He was also a former member of the United Mine Workers. Claude was a long-time Ripley Little League baseball manager and Midget League Football coach of the Blue Devils. He was a former President of the Ripley Athletic Boosters from 1977-1979. He could also be found on the sideline of Memorial Stadium many Friday nights where he was a member of the "chain gang." He also helped coach girls fast pitch softball. Most of all he was very supportive of all his children and grandchildren and loved attending all of their sporting and school events. He was also a member of West Ripley Baptist Church. He is survived by his children, James Ball (Tanya) of Ripley, Gordy Ball (Missy) of Ripley and Vicki Cox (Ken) of Bristol, Tenn.; brothers, Harold Ball, Dean Ball, Junior Aleshire and Nolan Aleshire; sisters, Jean Samson and Shirley Runyon; eight grandchildren; 15 great-grandchildren; and one great-great-grandchild. He is also survived by many nieces and nephews. In addition to his parents he was preceded in death by the love of his life and other half, Ruth Marie Ball. Funeral service 1 p.m. Monday, January 25, 2021, at Waybright Funeral Home, Ripley, with Pastor Franklin Howerton and Joe Lane officiating. Visitation will be from 11 a.m. until the time of the service. Burial with Military Rites provided by the Jackson County Honor Guard will be in the Fairplain Cemetery. Online memories and condolences can be sent to the family by visiting www.waybrightfuneralhome.com.
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