Unfortunately, several long-time members passed away in early 2021. Their full obituaries are featured in the April, 2021 edition of The Clapper (opens in new tab). Their individual announcements as originally posted are:

Ken Ballou

More sad news. Ken Ballou, who rang in Boston for many years, has died. Beyond its being of natural causes a few days ago, other details are currently hard to ascertain, but I will pass on more information when I learn it.

Ken hailed from Rhode Island, and learned to ring as an undergraduate at MIT. After earning his PhD in mathematics at Berkeley, Ken returned to Boston and worked for a variety of software companies.

Ken became a mainstay of Boston ringing during the 1980s and 1990s, particularly in hand. In all he rang 230 peals, two thirds of them in hand, 219 of them for the NAGCR, and conducted 25 of them. He was in the first ever peal of the standard eight spliced at the half-lead, rung by the Advent Sunday service band in 1988, and also the first such handbell peal, and his first peal of Glasgow was in hand, on the 5-6 pair, the first such peal rung for the NAGCR. Ken was particularly enamoured of Stedman, and called several peals of it.

In recent years Ken had dropped away from ringing, devoting much of his non-working time to directing chess tournaments.

Ken was a fun companion, and despite his nickname of “Useless,” which he cheerfully embraced, he was a jolly useful ringer. (Submitted by Don Morrison

Alan Ellis

It is with much sadness that I share the news that Alan Ellis passed away early in the morning on April 7, in a Vancouver hospital after a short illness. At this point there are no plans for a memorial service. Please keep Mae and their family in your prayers. Alan became a member of the Guild in 1979 and served as NAGCR President from 1993-1994. He was elected to Honorary Life Membership in 2007. He was one of our Central Council Representatives from 2014-2019. (Submitted by Bruce Buter)

William (Bill) Wakeland

I am also sad to report that William (Bill) Wakeland, from Muncie, Indiana, passed away on February 20, 2021. Unfortunately, Bill lived in an area that had a lack of nearby ringing and he never was able to progress very far. He toured around the country learning the historically beautiful tradition of tower bell change ringing. (Submitted by Bruce Buter)

Roland Perschon

Roland Perschon passed away on February 26, 2021. A founding member of the guild, Roland was a kind, caring man with a wonderful sense of humor. In 1994, he purchased a ring of 8 Whitechapel tower bells as a gift for his hometown of Pewaukee, Wisconsin. Those bells continue to await a host tower.

Roland's obituary can be viewed at: Roland A. Perschon Obituary - Visitation & Funeral Information (harderfuneralhome.com). (Submitted by Tom Farthing)

Geoff Bagley

We've heard from David Bagley that his father, Geoff Bagley, died peacefully on January 30, 2021 at age 92. Various NAG old-timers, especially those in Washington, DC, may remember Geoff from the two years that he was posted to the DC Area for work in 1972/1973. He and his wife Lynda were valuable additions to the Cathedral band and also joined in (and often hosted) our weekly handbell sessions at the time. Geoff was a founding member of the North American Guild. (Submitted by Quilla Roth)

Linda Woodford

I’m sorry to announce that Linda Woodford died peacefully, yesterday afternoon, 16 February 2021, after a several month illness. Her sister, Bonnie, was with her at the end. Linda was a well known ringer in Kalamazoo, formerly Boston. There will be a memorial service in Kalamazoo, but not until it is practical for folks to gather safely again.

Donations in lieu of flowers can be made to Kalamazoo Animal Rescue, P.O. Box 3295, Kalamazoo, MI 49003. (Submitted by Don Morrison)