Kevin W. Ballantine, 23, of DeKalb, Illinois, departed this life at his home after a courageous three-year battle with leukemia. He concluded his earthly adventure surrounded by his loving family and his very good friend Holly Swaim, buoyed by the overwhelming prayers and support of so many relatives and friends, and he began his next great adventure in the company of angels.
Born August 9, 1988, in Olney, Maryland, Kevin was many things to many people – son, grandson, brother, cousin, friend. Although his life was all too brief, he lived every moment with a passion and intensity that was infectious and an inspiration to all who knew him. He tried his best to live up to the words of his role model Mohandas Gandhi, “Be the change you wish to see in the world,” and his highest aspiration was to make a difference during his time on earth. He had hopes to be a high school chemistry teacher.
He touched the lives of many during his high school years as a member of the DeKalb High School Marching Band, and the DeKalb YMCA/DCST and DeKalb HS swim teams, and during his college years at Cornell University (Ithaca, New York) as a member of the Cornell Marching Band Drum Line and Delta Phi fraternity. He was an avid fan of the Chicago Blackhawks, the Chicago Bears, and the Boston Red Sox. His days were filled by pursuit of his many and varied interests – reading, woodworking, computers and technology, watching movies or his favorite TV shows, discussing politics with friends, sailing and hiking, planning home renovations, and making plans for the future. His greatest pleasures were spending time at Newfound Lake, New Hampshire, and creating memories with family and friends.
Kevin is survived by his loving family – his parents Dave Ballantine and Diane DeMers; his sister, Pooja, and brother, Keerti; both sets of grandparents, Capt. William and Barbara DeMers of Hingham, Massachusetts, and Dr. David and Agnes Ballantine of Frederick, Maryland; and so many aunts, uncles, cousins and friends. We will all miss him terribly.
Viewing will be from 4:30-8 p.m. Friday, January 20, at Anderson Funeral Home, DeKalb, and again beginning at 10:30 a.m. Saturday, January 21, at Newman Catholic Student Center on the Northern Illinois University campus. A memorial service will be held at 12:00 noon Saturday at Newman Catholic Student Center University Parish.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations be made to one of the educational scholarships established in Kevin’s memory. Scholarship details can be obtained on request by emailing KevinBeTheChange@aol.com. For information, visit www.AndersonFuneralHomeLtd.com or call 815-756-1022.