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TRAVERSE CITY, Mich. — Barbara Dean Balentine, 76, of Traverse City died Tuesday, March 6, 2018, at her home.

Barbara was born April 9, 1941, in La Crosse, the daughter of Donald Edward and Lillian Charlotte (Stair) Grosskopf. She was raised in La Crosse and graduated from La Crosse Central High School in 1959. She married Wayne Papenfuss in La Crosse Sept. 17, 1960, and he preceded her in death Nov. 14, 1962. On Jan. 21, 1966, she married Rex Balentine in La Crosse. He preceded her in death March 12, 2010.

Barbara was a strong, stoic, generous, energetic and fun person. She enjoyed working at Nugent’s Hallmark store for many years, as well as shopping and attending her granddaughter Addi’s softball games. Barbara enjoyed being a part of Prince of Peace Lutheran Church, as well as volunteering her time at Munson Medical Center and the Cowell Family Cancer Center in Traverse City. She especially enjoyed time spent with family and friends.

Barbara is survived by her sons, Steven Donald (Beth) Balentine of Williamsburg, Mich., Bradley James (Corinna) Balentine of Traverse City; and her grandchildren, Peter Ryan (Desiree) Balentine of Traverse City and Addison Balentine of Traverse City. In addition to her husbands, she was preceded in death by her parents; and a sister, Donna Mauer.

At her request, no formal services will be held. Burial will be in Grand Traverse Memorial Gardens in Traverse City.

For a more lasting memorial, the family suggests that monetary gifts to remember Barbara be directed to the Traverse City Senior Center Building Fund, 801 E. Front St., Traverse City, MI 49686, or to the Women’s Cancer Fund, c/o Munson Regional Healthcare Foundation, 1150 Medical Campus Dr., Traverse City, Mich. 49684.

Please share your memories of Barbara with her family by visiting her online tribute page at

The family is being cared and served by Reynolds-Jonkhoff Funeral Home and Cremation Services, 305 Sixth St., Traverse City, Mich. 49684

the life of: Barbara Dean Balentine
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