Jared Andrew Balfour, 33, of Checotah, died Thursday, May 9, 2013.
He was born February 5, 1980 to Michael Lee and Nancy Ann (Howell) Balfour in Stillwater, Oklahoma. He lived in Stillwater until 1982 when his family moved to Council Hill. Jared attended school for nine years at Midway Public Schools. He transferred to Checotah schools for his sophomore and junior years and then returned to Midway for his senior year. Jared played football his senior year and was a very dynamic defensive player. He showed livestock for all 12 years. He received several degrees through the FFA including the State and American Farmer degree. Following high school, Jared joined the Oklahoma National Guard with the objective of acquiring money for a college education. He attended college at Central State University and Oklahoma State University and was working on a degree in International Business. His time in the National Guard was spent as “Forward Observer” the one who goes ahead and sets the targets.
Jared’s division of the 45th Infantry was mobilized three different times. Once to Arkansas for six months to guard the nuclear plant, once to New Orleans for four months immediately after Hurricane Katrina, then to Iraq for one year. In Iraq his duties included guarding prisoners at the prison hospital and transporting prisoners via helicopter to Bagdad. He was very proud of his military service and never regretted any of these assignments.
When he returned from Iraq, he moved to Morris and lived with his brother Jesse. He bought a dog, Jade, who if you knew Jared, know they were inseparable. She was his closest friend. Jared loved to fish more than anything. He probably has fished every pond in this county and several others. He would find a pond on maps on the computer and then hike in to find a pond you didn’t even know was there.
At the time of his death, Jared was on his way to work as a welder. He had recently started a new job at Exteran in Coweta and really was excited about this new direction in his life.
Jared was preceded in death by his father, Michael Lee Balfour; grandfather, Rodger Howell; grandmother, Flossie Balfour; aunt, Marilyn Mays and uncle, Larry Mays.
He is survived by his mother, Nancy Villanueva of Checotah; step-father, Harry Villanueva of Checotah; sister and brother-in-law, Kriston and Dillon Moore of Oktaha; brother and sister-in-law, Jesse and Jessie Balfour of Tulsa; aunt, Danna Wall of Tulsa; grandmother, Maxine Howell of Tulsa; step-sister and husband, Starla and Todd Russell of Hitchita; step-sister, Sheila Bolton of Tulsa; nieces and nephews, Hunter Russell, Madison Russell, Hannah Bolton, William Bolton, Naomi and Tyler Balfour and Abigail Moore; aunt and uncle, Al and Cheryl Matthews of Muskogee; grandparents, Gene and Roberta Balfour of Vici; uncles, Daryl and Kevin Balfour of Vici; aunt and uncle, Larry and Judy Villanueva of Davidson; uncles, Jesse and Johnny Gonzales of Lawton and many other aunts, uncles, cousins, and friends.
Funeral services will be 10:00 a.m. Friday, May 17, 2013 at Elm Grove Baptist Church with Rev. Rick LaBounty officiating. Interment will follow at 1:00 p.m. in Fort Gibson National Cemetery.
Funeral service arrangements are under the direction of Checotah Funeral & Cremation Service. Condolences to the family may be made at www.checotahfuneralservice.com