The Van Wert County Courthouse

Friday, Jun. 5, 2020

Dolores Ann (Johns) Balyeat

Dolores Ann (Johns) Balyeat passed away early Sunday morning December 22, 2019. 

Dolores Balyeat recent
Dolores Balyeat then

She was born December 31, 1929, in Ojai, California, to Robert A. and Goldie (Miller) Johns, who both preceded her in death.

A 1947 graduate and class secretary of Van Wert High School, Dolores continued to organize class reunions for many years. Following high school, she worked at the Peoples Bank and Trust, which later became Norwest Bank and then Wells Fargo. She retired from the bank in 1991. Following retirement, she became an active disaster volunteer with the American Red Cross and responded to numerous disasters, both locally and across the country. She was also a member of the Van Wert Area Alumni Marching Band and the Second Time Arounders Marching Band, appearing in many local parades and the Three Rivers Festival in Fort Wayne, Indiana.

Dolores was an avid gardener, golfer, reader, knitter, and an accomplished artist who enjoyed drawing and painting.

She is survived by three children, Dyann Balyeat Ricica, Louis (Martha) Balyeat, and Annette K. Balyeat, all of Van Wert; a son-in-law, Gary L. Thomas of Van Wert; five grandchildren, Gabrielle Chavarria, Convoy, Andrew J. Thomas, Bradley Thomas, Robert Balyeat, Joseph Balyeat, all of Van Wert, and Abigail Ricica Daniels of Sydney, Australia; and seven great-grandchildren.

A daughter, Roberta (Balyeat) Thomas; one son, Jonathan Balyeat; and a son-in-law, Mark D. Ricica, also preceded her in death.

A memorial service will be held at 1 p.m. Saturday, December 28, at Alspach-Gearhart Funeral Home & Crematory in Van Wert. 

Visitation is two hours prior to the service, from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday at the funeral home.

In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made in Dolores’ name to The Ohio State University Extension Master Gardener Volunteer Program for the care and maintenance of the Smiley Park Children’s Garden:

Condolences may be expressed at

POSTED: 12/23/19 at 3:38 pm. FILED UNDER: Obituaries