Ann Heins Balk

Ann Heins Balk

Ann Heins Balk

NEW SCOTLAND — Ann Katherine Heins Balk — an artist, an actress, a chemist, and a community supporter — died at her home in New Scotland on Sunday, July 8, 2018.

Born in 1925 to the late Ann Sablon Heins and William F. Heins, she grew up in Glens Falls and graduated from Russell Sage College. She worked as a chemist for General Analyn in Easton, Pennsylvania, where she was recognized for her patents.

“A great lover of the arts and a talented actress, Ann played many leading roles throughout high school, college, and in community theaters in Easton; Woodstock, New York; Ithaca, New York; and Albany, New York,” her family wrote in a tribute. “As Viola in ‘Twelfth Night,’ Ann became acquainted backstage with the love of her life, Walter Balk, who played Orsino.

“They married in 1951, had three children, and were best friends and lovers for over 57 years, until Walter’s death in 2008.

“Ann was a gifted artist with pen and pencil, watercolor, and oils. She cared deeply about her community, volunteering with the League of Women Voters and serving on the Voorheesville School Board.

“She enjoyed studying Italian at the University at Albany, meeting with her book club, reading The New York Times every day, and tending her beloved gardens, including heirloom roses and an extraordinarily huge specimen Burr Oak she raised from a small seedling. Many dogs, cats, ponies, horses, birds, and other wild creatures found refuge with Ann.

“Every day with Mom was filled with awe and appreciation for the natural world. She surrounded her family and friends with love. Godspeed, dear Mama.”

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Ann Katherine Heins Balk is survived by her children, Amy Virginia Balk-Armstrong, Peter Balk, Christianne Balk; by her grandchildren, Austin, Lauren, Jessie, Samuel, and Bella; by her great-grandchildren, Maelle, Olive Ann, and Teo; by her cousin, Nancy Heins Wenning, by her sister-in-law, Raymond Heins; and by her niece Sylvianne Jaras Cabrera. She was briefly survived by her sister, Virginia S. Heins.

She was preceded in death by her mother and father, Ann Sablon Heins and William F. Heins; by her husband, Walter Balk; by her brother, Norman Heins; and by many family and friends.

A celebration of her life will be held at Applebee Funeral Home at 403 Kenwood Avenue in Delmar on Thursday, June 13, at 3:30 p.m. RSVPs welcome at or 206-380-9544.

A graveside burial will be held on Friday, June 14, at 2 p.m. at The Woodstock Cemetery in Woodstock, New York.

Memorial contributions may be made to the Open Space Institute (openspaceinstitute.org) or to Russell Sage College.

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