Cover photo for Lee Ballard's Obituary
Lee Ballard Profile Photo
1930 Lavinia 2023

Lee Ballard

March 15, 1930 — December 22, 2023

Lavinia Magdalena (Lee) Polczak Ballard was born on March 15, 1930 ~ yes, the Ides of March, to Stanley and Anna Polczak. Both immigrants from Poland, Lee's parents instilled in her a deep love for family, unwavering faith, and strength and tenacity in life's hard times, while growing up on the family farm in Richland, NY with her brothers and sisters.

Lee was an adventurous spirit, striking out on her own at age 18 from Oswego, NY to train in airline communications in Kansas City, MO in 1948. She transferred to Dallas, TX to work for Braniff Airways, where she met and married Charles Ballard in 1951. When children came along, Lee became a full-time mom to their rambunctious tribe of eight, as Charlie continued flying for Braniff. In 1972, Charlie and Lee decided to leave the city, and moved the family to a home in the country, in Bowie, TX.

Lee's Catholic faith was very dear to her throughout her life. Wherever she and Charlie lived, they were active members of their church, serving on parish councils, and various ministries. They were charter members of St. Jerome's Catholic Church in Bowie, served as respite care providers in Lady Lake, FL, and volunteered in the CCD program and the Parish Office at St. Mary's Catholic Church in Brenham, TX. Lee was also trained in American Sign Language and clown ministry, bringing the Christian message to children and adults in these languages with love.

Lee had a beautiful voice, and as a young woman, sang for weddings, funerals, and other events. She was an excellent dancer, loving all styles and eras of music. Learning to play the accordion and drums from her father, Lee passed down her love of music to her children. She was an artist as well, sketching and painting being her favorite media. She even designed two of the homes that she and the family lived in over the years.

Lee was predeceased by her husband, Charles Ballard, her son, Michael Ballard, and her granddaughter, Nikki Ballard, as well as her parents, Stanley Polczak and Anna Polczak, brothers, Raymond Polczak, and Ted Polczak, and sisters, Virginia Doviak, Stella Delia, and Irene Petta. She is survived by two sons and five daughters, Patrick Ballard and wife, Janice, of Birmingham, AL, Kevin Ballard and wife, Peggy, of Quincy, IL, Jenny Connelly and husband, Kevin, of Wellsboro, PA, Anna Martinez and husband, John, of Wichita Falls, TX, Lucy Maiorano and husband, Rich, of Prescott, AZ, Rebecca Spray and husband, Don, of Mansfield, TX, Rachel Diserens and husband, Daniel, of College Station, TX, and Jeannie Ballard West, of Dallas, TX. Lee is also survived by her sister, Lucy Emory, of Mexico, NY. A beautiful legacy of Lee and Charlie's love of family continues in their beloved 26 grandchildren and 40 great-grandchildren.

Visitation for Lee Ballard will be held at 1:00 p.m., Friday, January 5, 2024, at St. Mary's Catholic Church in Brenham, TX; the Holy Rosary will be prayed at 1:30 p.m. The Funeral Mass will be celebrated at 2:00 p.m., followed by interment at Calvary Cemetery in Brenham. For those who cannot attend the services and wish to pay their respects privately, visitation hours are also available at Memorial Oaks Chapel in Brenham, TX Friday morning, from 7:30 a.m. until 12 noon.

In lieu of flowers, we, the family, encourage donations to two organizations very dear to our Mother's heart: Unbound Ministries, a sponsorship program for impoverished third-world children, and Reliant Hospice Care. Your donations may be sent to:

C/o Rebecca Ballard Spray

P.O. Box 1313

Mansfield, TX 76063

Please designate which organization you wish to donate to.

A Celebration of Lee's Life for all family and friends to attend will be celebrated at a later date. We look forward to seeing you all as we remember our Mother at that time.

Funeral arrangements have been entrusted to Memorial Oaks Chapel, 1306 West Main Street, Brenham. To post a tribute to the family please visit www.memorialoakschapel.com.

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Lee Ballard, please visit our flower store.

Service Schedule

Past Services

Visitation

Friday, January 5, 2024

1:00 - 1:30 pm (Central time)

St. Mary's Catholic Church of Brenham

701 Church St, Brenham, TX 77833

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Holy Rosary

Friday, January 5, 2024

1:30 - 2:00 pm (Central time)

St. Mary's Catholic Church of Brenham

701 Church St, Brenham, TX 77833

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Funeral Service

Friday, January 5, 2024

2:00 - 3:00 pm (Central time)

St. Mary's Catholic Church

Plant Trees

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Interment

Friday, January 5, 2024

3:00 - 3:30 pm (Central time)

Calvary Catholic Cemetery

1005 College Ave, Brenham, TX 77833

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