Scott Walter Ballif quietly slipped away from this earth on Saturday, July 29, 2023. His last week on earth was spent surrounded by his four children, their families, as well as other close friends. For years, Scott had valiantly fought against the effects brought on by dementia, and even in this challenging stage of his life made new friends, was a favorite of aides and nurses at Lotus Park Care Center and continued to love and support his ever-growing family.
Scott was born on December 8, 1935, to Mark Squires and Edna Dixon Ballif. He was the third of three children, with an older brother and friend, Mark Dixon Ballif, and his sweet older sister Barbara Wade, who he adored his whole life. Scott was born into a family who loved sports. Scott spent his childhood chasing around the neighborhood of North Ogden, a house and area he would hold dear to his heart throughout his life. With a father as a coach, Scott excelled at many sports as a youngster. A self-described shy child, Scott found his comfort on the ballfield and basketball court. No doubt, he spent many a day involved in neighborhood games. As he approached high school age, he chose to follow his dad Mark to Ogden High School, rather than attend Weber High School, where his sister Barbara attended. Little did he know, but along with many athletic successes he’d have, this move would have an even bigger impact on his life. This is where he’d meet the love of his life, and the two of them would become an amazing team. High school sweethearts, Scott and Sherma would be best friends from that point on, becoming almost inseparable.
Scott was a great athlete at Ogden High, earning eleven varsity letters during his three years, along with being awarded the “Gold Watch”. He loved telling the story about his sophomore year. The basketball team, coached by his dad Mark, was playing in the state tournament. Frustrated by the team’s performance early in the first game, Mark yelled for Ballif to report in. Scott hadn’t played much in many games, but went in and scored sixteen points, though he was scared to death. He ended up making the all-tournament honorable mention team. He also proudly told stories of playing quarterback in the “old single wing offense” as he’d call it. With no face masks, and handling the ball every play, he’d have a scab on his nose the whole football season. He spoke highly of his high school years and talked often of the many close friends made during high school. Some of these remained good friends right up until the day he died. Following high school, Scott headed to BYU to play football, having earned an athletic scholarship. His college career ended after his freshman year due to some injuries sustained during the season. He remained a BYU fan for the rest of his life, often referring to BYU as simply the “BY”, or the “Y”.
Sherma and Scott were married June 6, 1956. They were later sealed for time and all eternity in the Logan Temple. They would move from Provo to Logan, and both Scott and Sherma attended and graduated from Utah State University, both in Physical Education. Scott got his first career-related job at Wahlquist Jr. High, where he taught P.E. and Math, as well as other subjects. He then moved on to Bonneville High, where he continued to teach and coach. Basketball became his true passion, and he coached many years at Bonneville. He loved his time as a coach, but knew it wasn’t a great living. Along the way, he took a break from coaching/teaching for two years, during which time he helped his brother Mark build Patio Springs Golf Course, later changed to Wolf Creek Golf Course. He soon returned to coaching, and with the advice of a close friend started on a path to administration. For one year, Scott served as an assistant principal at Bonneville and still coached. He then moved on to Roy High where he served as an assistant principal. That was followed by several years as principal at South Ogden Jr. High, Valley School, and finally found his real niche as an elementary principal, finishing out his career at Plain City Elementary. He loved these young kids, and was often seen playing basketball, kickball, dodgeball, and just about any game they were playing. He loved listening to the kids singing songs in the lunchroom, and would lead them often in many patriotic songs and other popular hits, his favorites being “Angels Among Us”, by Alabama, and “God Bless the USA”, by Lee Greenwood. A highlight of his last year was when on his last day the students sang to him as he prepared to leave. Scott truly loved kids and made many great friends throughout his years in the various schools.
Following his career, Scott enjoyed his free time very much. He spent most of those days in search of fish in beautiful lakes and rivers, chasing golf balls at local golf courses, and taking many trips with his sweetheart “Shermie” to the family cabin near Jackson Hole. Family trips were one of Scott’s favorite things to do, and he would drop everything and anything to hook up the camper and boat, throw some food in, and head out. These were great times for him and his family. He also loved woodworking, and built many wonderful things, his specialty being birdhouses, that he gave to many people.
Scott was a devout member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. He loved serving in many callings, but his favorite by far would be when he and Sherma had the chance to serve as Mission President in the Oregon-Portland Mission. After that amazing experience, he again had a wonderful opportunity to serve. He was called to serve as MTC President in Auckland, New Zealand. They met wonderful people and missionaries during these years. Oregon and New Zealand held a special place in his heart.
Scott and Sherma were the proud parents of four children, Becky (Vern) Garner, Brian (Jann) Ballif, Debbie (Don) Quinton, and Bryce (Pam) Ballif. They were also blessed with fifteen grandchildren, twenty-three great-grandchildren, and one great-great-grandchild. Scott’s grandkids loved playing games with him, and he often blended in as what Sherma called, “a great big kid”.
Scott is survived by his sister, Barbara Wade; in-laws, Paul and Joan Nixon; and sister-in-law, Kay Ballif. He was preceded in death by his parents, his brother Mark D.; and in-laws, Deb and Catharine Craven; sister-in-law, Peggy Doughty; and brother-in-law, Blaine Wade.
The family would like to express their appreciation to the staff at Lotus Park Care Center, as well as the A+ Hospice team, who have cared for him for the past eight years.
Funeral services will be held on Tuesday, August 8, 2023 at 2 p.m. at Lindquist’s North Ogden Mortuary, 2140 North Washington Blvd. Friends may visit with the family on Monday from 6 to 8 p.m., and on Tuesday, from 12:30 to 1:30 p.m. at the mortuary. Interment, Ben Lomond Cemetery, North Ogden.
Services will be live-streamed and available the day of the services by scrolling to the bottom of Scott’s obituary page at: www.lindquistmortuary.com, where condolences may also be shared.