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Michael Ballard Memorial Wrestling Donations

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If you knew Michael you know that he dedicated his life to teaching and athletics. So it seems only fitting that in lieu of flowers we ask that you make a donation to the North Buncombe High School Wrestling program. This is where Michael’s love of sports began and we know he would appreciate this more than anything.

If you would like to join us this week in celebrating his life, please see below for all details.


Michael Scott Ballard, 53, passed away on February 2nd at 1:15 pm in his home in Myrtle Beach, SC surrounded by his loving family. He is survived by his wife Carey Candler Ballard, two children, Cloie D. Ballard and Mal A. Ballard, parents William Shelby Ballard and Loretta Briggs Ballard, and mother-in-law Brenda P. Candler.

Michael was born and raised in Asheville, NC where he participated in many different types of sports, but ultimately fell in love with wrestling. His love of this sport led to many accomplishments including winning the NC State Heavyweight Champion title in 1988 and contributing to the University of North Carolina's ACC Championship win in 1992. He carried his passion for wrestling along with all other sports throughout the rest of his life.

Michael was a long time coach, teacher, and friend who touched the lives of so many with his kindness, love, and crazy (sometimes dark) humor. He never met a stranger and treated everyone he met with the same amount of kindness and silliness no matter how long he knew you. This love of people along with his love of history is what drove his passion for teaching. He truly loved every one of his students and co-workers, but loved playing pranks on them the most.

In November 2017, Michael was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer, and just like he did with his athletics, coaching, and teaching, he never ever gave up, which allowed him to fight for over six years. Something that is truly unheard of with pancreatic cancer. He faced his disease the same way he faced everything else, with unwavering faith and an endless amount of humor. He loved life and he loved his people more than anything and his amazing soul will truly be missed.

The family will receive friends Tuesday, February 6, 2024, from 5:00 PM until 7:00 PM, at McMillan-Small Funeral Home in Myrtle Beach, SC.

Final services will be held in Mars Hill, NC later this week directed by Blue Ridge Funeral Home.


  • Stephani Garrett
    • $50 
    • 2 mos
  • Kimberly Shuman
    • $50 
    • 2 mos
  • Tinika Dixon
    • $20 
    • 2 mos
  • Ellen Barnes
    • $50 
    • 2 mos
  • Rachel Clemente
    • $25 
    • 2 mos


Carey Ballard
Weaverville, NC

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