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1935 Kazimierz 2021

Kazimierz Ball

May 23, 1935 — September 9, 2021

It is with great sadness the family announces the passing of Kazimierz “Kaz” Ball of Spartanburg, S.C., formerly of Fayetteville NC, on Thursday, September 9, 2021. Kazimierz was born May 23, 1935, in Czechstowa, Poland to Helene and Boleslaw Ball. He was pre-deceased by his loving spouse, Hildegard. Kaz and his beloved wife, Hildegard, shared more than fifty-four years together. Their journey began in the small town of Idar-Oberstein, West Germany and continued through multiple U.S. Army duty stations in Germany and the US. Their devotion and endearing love set an example for their sons and grandchildren to follow. Kaz was extremely proud of his Polish/German heritage, military service, and life challenges he overcame. During WWII, when the Germans occupied Poland, his family was forced into hard labor by the Nazis. He was thankful that he was able to endure and survive that experience. At the end of WWII Kazimierz decided he wanted to make the military his career. First joining the British Army at the young age of 16, followed by being accepted into the U.S. Army at around the age of 18. Kazimierz faithfully served in the U.S. Army, retiring after 23 years. Kaz had a special function in the military as he speaks 7 different languages, and that skill was used to conduct interrogations as well as perform various intelligence functions. Kaz served in a Special Forces unit in Vietnam as an advisor. He served three tours in Vietnam. Throughout the 1960s and into the early 1970s, Kaz served as a “Cold War Warrior” where he functioned as a special liaison with West German Intelligence Services to coordinate “actions” along the West/East Germany border frontiers. These duties exemplified the significant impact Kaz had in that era in assuring security in a very tense period. It was some of the most satisfying duties he enjoyed in his illustrious military career. The last years of his military service were spent traveling base-to-base training soldiers in the intelligence tradecraft. He shared his considerable tradecraft with young soldiers focused on intelligence functions. Kaz cherished spending time with his family and grandchildren. Visiting the mountains of North Carolina, introducing grandchildren to mining for gemstones, bird watching, attending Formula 1 Races, boat rides and fishing on Lake Gaston, sharing stories of his childhood in Poland and Germany, and adventures while in the Military were a living history lesson. His move to Spartanburg provided an opportunity to spend more time with family along the SC coast and the NC mountains, as well as the Summit Hills community and their activities that paid tribute to his heritage – Oktoberfest and Veterans events. Appreciating delicious German and Polish meals and drink brought a smile to Kaz’s face. Kaz took pleasure in being the “official taste tester”, instructing the proper way to prepare dishes and giving tweaks to make the meal more authentic. A good oyster shucking and crab picking around a table filled with family were equally enjoyed. Kaz is survived by his two sons, Thomas Ball (Sally Ann Starling) of Raleigh and Michael Christopher Ball (Palmer Davison) of Spartanburg, S.C.; and his grandchildren, Ashton Thomas Ball (Carrie) of Riva, Maryland, Caroline Hillise Ball Parvathikar (Sameer) of Raleigh; Anne Dobson Ball and Taylor Davison Ball of Spartanburg, S.C. He is also survived by two great grandchildren, Savannah Mae Ball and Carson Thomas Ball of Riva, Maryland. A memorial service will be held on Friday, September 24, 2021 at 1:00PM at Summit Hills. Internment and a Celebration of Life will follow at later date in Arlington National Cemetery. In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations to be made to Wreaths Across America, Arlington National Cemetery, Fort Myer, VA 22211 or The Breast Cancer Research Foundation, 28 West 44th Street, Suite 609, New York, New York 10036.
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