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Franklin A. Balk, a retired engineer for American Standard and active parishioner at St. Leo The Great Catholic Church, Amherst, died Tuesday (Sept. 23, 1997) in Veterans Hospital. He was 77.

Balk was a native of Buffalo, attended Bennett High School and was a member of the first graduating class at Kensington High School in 1938.

He began working for Bell Aircraft in 1939 but was drafted in 1941 during World War II. Balk served in the Army Air Forces from 1941 to 1946.

After the war, he studied part-time at the University of Buffalo, where he earned his engineering degree. Balk joined American Standard in 1953 and retired from there in 1984.

At St. Leo's, he was a member of the Holy Name Society and often attended retreats at the St. Columban Retreat Center in Derby.

Balk was an avid golfer and member of the Buffalo Golf Club at Grover Cleveland Golf Course. He also enjoyed fishing.

Survivors include his wife, Phyllis R. Welch of Eggertsville; a daughter, Deborah Ann Zybtowski of Ann Arbor, Mich.; two sons, James of Milwaukee and Michael of Tempe, Ariz.; his stepmother, Gertrude Balk; and seven grandchildren.

A Mass of Christian Burial will be offered at 10:30 a.m. Saturday in St. Leo the Great Church, 885 Sweet Home Road. Prayers will be said in Amigone Funeral Home, 2600 Sheridan Drive, Town of Tonawanda. Burial will be in Mount Calvary Cemetery, Cheektowaga.


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