Albert Joe Balen
Albert Joe Balen, 74, of Yorba Linda, passed away Sunday, Feb. 10, 2013 at his home.
He is survived by his wife of 54 years, Patricia Diane Balen; children, Gregory Balen of Agoura Hill, Denise Freeze of Anaheim Hills and Timothy Balen of Moscow, Idaho; granddaughters, Laura and Erin Freeze and Natalie Balen; grandsons, John and Erik Balen; sister, Joanne Balen of Marietta, Ga.; as well as many friends considered family.
The son of Joe and Anna Balen, he was born in Los Angeles on Oct. 6, 1938 and was raised in Montebello and Whittier. He graduated from Whittier High School where he played basketball and baseball, and remained in contact with several of his former teammates. He attended Whittier College, where he continued to play basketball and baseball, and graduated with a bachelor’s degree in Physical Education.
Midway through college, Al married his high school sweetheart, then Patricia Diane Bradley, and they went on to start their family three years later.
Al began his career in education as a teacher and went on to hold such titles as Guidance Counselor, Dean of Students, Head Coach for football, basketball, baseball and track, and Athletic Director. In 1977 he changed careers and became a food broker, continuing to run his own firm until his death. He lived his entire life in Southern California, the most recent 26 years in Orange County.
Al loved all sports. He spent much of his adult life continuing to engage in a variety of sports including bowling, fast pitch softball and basketball leagues. His favorite sports passion was golf, through which he had the opportunity to meet and regularly golf with many of his closest friends. He greatly enjoyed his golf and friendships at the Western Hills Country Club, where he was a member.
But Al loved his family most of all and enjoyed his time with wife Patricia watching his children and then grandchildren growing up and living their lives. They all loved him very much and he will be greatly missed.
A viewing was held Thursday, Feb. 14 at McAulay & Wallace Mortuary in Fullerton. Funeral service were held the following day at the same location with burial at Rose Hills in Whittier.