July 2, 1926 ~ January 20, 2022

Born in: Walsenburg, Colorado
Resided in: Pueblo, Colorado

Service for Ernest Ballotti:

Ernest Ballotti
b July 2, 1926 – d January 20, 2022
As a former educator and child advocate, Ernie Ballotti stood for the kid that didn’t have a parent in the stands. He was that person that showed up to give encouragement, help purchase a uniform or just give a pat on the back. He selflessly devoted his entire life to the care and well-being of children.
Ernie was born in Walsenburg, Colorado to Ernesto Ballotti and Beatrice nee Pini. He lost his father in a coal mine collapse when he was ten and was sent, with his surviving family members (mom Beatrice, brothers Giacomo and Geno, and sister Mary) to the Mooseheart orphanage near Batavia, Illinois. There he played every sport, participated in choir and plays, learned the welding trade, and graduated high school. Upon high school graduation Ernie enlisted in the Navy and was sent to boot camp at the Naval Station Great Lakes in Illinois. He participated in the Pacific theater until he was honorably discharged in 1946.
After rejoining his family in Walsenburg, he went to Adams State College and earned a BA in Business with a minor in Education. While at Adams State he was a member of the football team and sang in the choir as a tenor. Upon graduation he started his career in education in Sanford, Colorado and proceeded to teach music at Pleasantview in District 70 in Pueblo. He then moved to District 60 where he first taught at Fulton Heights elementary school, before moving to Freed Middle School. About this time Ernie met and married the love of his life, Joyce, and adopted two young daughters, a dog and a cat. In the subsequent years he and Joyce would welcome three additional kids and many more animals to the household.
He then moved to Centennial High School and taught English and music for several years. While working as a teacher he returned to school to earn a Masters degree in Education from Adams State College. He then became the Assistant Athletic Director for all four high schools in District 60. As Assistant Athletic Director he attended nearly every sporting event including Special Olympics, and scheduled the dozens of necessary officials, security, and ticket takers. It was his work for the district that earns him a number of honors, including induction as a charter member of the Greater Pueblo Sports Association, an honorary member of the Colorado Football Officials Association, a member of the Political Action Committee for Education, and induction into multiple other statewide education and sports associations and groups. But even more importantly, this is when he made many of his lifelong friends.
Ernie took early retirement from teaching at age 55 and started an insurance agency for Farmers Insurance, where he worked well into his 70s. A special highlight of these later years was being nominated to carry the Olympic Torch for the winter Olympics in Utah in 2002. Not surprisingly, Ernie was selected to be the first runner in Colorado Springs kicking off the festivities where he generously shared the torch and took many photos with kids and other spectators and subsequently shared his experience and the torch with local grade schools.
Ernie loved Colorado, nature, wildlife, and the changing seasons. He was a big Bronco fan attending most of the home games over the last 20 years. He was an avid fly fisherman – tying his own flies, hunted for mushrooms, explored any bumpy dirt road in his sedans, climbed 14ers to get to the best fishing holes and generally lived life with zest! He loved his family, and most other people he met, unconditionally.
Ernie is survived by his sister Mary (Tom) Urban, wife Joyce (nee Habib) Ballotti, daughter Manetta (Dennis) DeRemer, daughter Paula Errett, son Brian (Michelle Wallace), daughter Kerry (Tom) Nutter, and daughter Kristin (Eric) Ballotti; grandchildren Paul (Brooke) DeRemer, Christopher (Leanne) DeRemer, Kylie Errett, Daniel Ballotti, Allison Ballotti, Mike Nutter, Maggie Nutter, Jessica Nutter and great grandchildren Laurel DeRemer, Hayes DeRemer, Skye Errett-Gray, Linden DeRemer, Ruth DeRemer, and Hannah DeRemer and many, many other nieces, nephews, cousins and special in laws.
Funeral will be held 10 a.m. Wednesday, January 26, 2022, in the Montgomery & Steward Funeral Chapel, 1317 N. Main Street, Pueblo, Colorado, followed by a reception. Burial will be at 1 p.m. Thursday, January 27, 2022, at Saint Mary’s South Cemetery, Walsenburg, Colorado.
In lieu of flowers, please make contributions to Mooseheart orphanage (www.mooseheart.org) or to the charity of your choice. Livestream at www.MontgomerySteward.com

Services

Funeral Service: January 26, 2022 10:00 am

Montgomery & Steward Funeral Chapel
1317 N. Main Street
Pueblo, CO 81003

719-542-1552
http://www.montgomerysteward.com

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  1. Mr. Ballotti, as he was respectfully known by his students at Freed Jr HS. Memories come back to his fairness and strength of character. I can truly say that he was one of the reasons why I became a teacher. I can remember his classes at Freed…constant challenges in fitness, sportsmanship, boxing, wrestling and playing together.
    Later, as a D60 coach, Ernie led a district athletic program with Sol Raso. You always knew where you stood in relation to honoring your job, commitment and transparency…it was truly the Golden Age of D60 Athletics.
    To this day, I remember the moral mini-lectures from Mr. Ballotti on the stage at Freed…words to live by.

  2. Brian and all, i am so sorry to hear of your father’s passing. his ‘history’ is amazing and many things i never knew. what a wonderful ‘giving’ life he had. praying for you and all the family for peace and love.

  3. CandleImageMr. B, thank you for a lifetime of LOVE, friendship and many many memories. They will all live in our hearts forever!.

  4. CandleImageKerry, Tom, Mike, Maggie and Jesse,
    We’re thinking of you and sending all our love.
    Michelle and Brandon Graham

  5. Hello Kerry, Tom and Family, please accept our sincere condolences for your loss. Ernie is a true renaissance man.
    What an amazing life!

  6. I am so glad I knew Ernie. When he moved into his office on Vinewood, it was never a dull moment. We all kind of became family up there and Ernie was always good for a joke or two. May he rest in peace. My condolences to all of you…

  7. ERNIE. My awesome brother-in-law and my friend. What can I say about the 60+ years that you were so much a part of my life and my family’s lives. My mind is flooded with so many great memories of fun excursions with our kids, parties, Sunday drives, Bronco games, and the laughter — so many!

    Thank you, thank you for those unforgettable years.

    With love,
    Lulu

  8. CandleImageErnie was a great Man. I’m so happy to have known Him. He will forever be in my heart.
    Our deepest condolences. Our thoughts and prayers are with you all.
    Love you Joyce and all His family !
    Rosemarie Bonacorsi and Her family in France

  9. CandleImageTo my extended family:

    I met grandpa and grammie when I was 13yrs old! They opened their home to me, and gave me one of the best summers of my childhood. Watching wheel of fortune before dinner every night. 😂 And bringing us to the amazing Renaissance Festival. And much more throughout the years💜 Grandpa was such a ray of light. An extraordinary man. The things he has done in his lifetime; most can’t say they have done. He got to meet our daughter in 2019, (such a special moment) and I remember him beaming. Im so grateful I got to capture that moment and share a few hours with you that day! I hope hes at peace now. I know he knows he was truly loved and the family is going to miss him deeply! RIP grandpa B ! 💜

    Myself, Jason & Savanna are truly sorry. Words fail to express our deep sorrow for your loss. Our hearts goes out to you all. Please know that We are with you. Wishing you strength and comfort through this difficult time.

  10. CandleImageTo Aunt Joyce and my Cousins:

    How lucky we all were to have him! He was just a humble guy and loved you all SO MUCH! Did he ever sit down and take it easy? Never! I remember picnics, pinon picking, holidays and so much more. He has a special place in heaven and will be greatly missed. Love you, Uncle Ernie!

  11. Brian and Family –

    Your father was a wonderful man. A great friend to my dad and our family. RIP Ernie – you will be missed greatly!!

    Doug, Mike and Mark Fitzgerald

  12. CandleImageTo Ernest’s Family and Friends, may care and love of those around you provide comfort and peace to get you through the days ahead. My most sincere condolences.

    I am confident that Ernie is enjoying storytelling with “Mooseheart Red Ramblers” Alumni, Friends, and Family Members that have preceded him.

    John Upton, “UPS”, Mooseheart Class of ’70

  13. Sorry to hear this. Ernie lived a great life. Always enjoyed being around him. Very dedicated & much respected.
    RIP, my good man.
    Coach Tom Brockman

  14. CandleImageErnie forever into our heart . Rest in peace.
    Deepest condolences for joyce and family god bless you.
    We keep wonderful memories with ernie in colorado at his home a grateful man smiling joking we miss him….
    He was always near his family
    I am sure that your brother jim welcomed you into heaven !
    Anny and family

  15. CandleImageUncle Ernie, you brought so much joy and love into our lives, we miss you already, thank you for all the blessings of your love precious Uncle Ernie. Until we meet again . . . God bless.
    Dear Aunt Joyce and family, may beautiful memories of Uncle Ernie bring you love, peace, and joy.
    We love you all and keep you in our prayers.
    Tony and Janet Ballotti

  16. Ernie was a great guy and will be missed by all who knew him.
    My condolences to all the family.
    May you know peace in the days to come.
    Marilyn Barrett

  17. Ernie, forever in our hearts.
    To the family, our deepest condolences.
    We are honored to be a part of Ernie’s family.
    May he forever Rest In Peace.

    Steve and Rendi Ballotti Straessler

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