Darlene Bearden Ballentine passed away peacefully on a Sunday morning, Sept. 18, 2022.
She was born March 3, 1937, in Hot Springs, Ark., where she lived her entire life. Her parents were Aaron Bearden and Bertha Cogbill Bearden Robinson.
She started dating the love of her life, Wallace Ballentine, when she was 14. They lived across the street from each other. They were married a week after she graduated high school -- she was 17.
They had three children: Valerie, Kim and David. She was a homemaker until David was a year old and then became a hairdresser and worked in her mother's hair salon for many years. After that, she became a realtor. She loved being a wife, mother and homemaker, always keeping a tidy and clean, well-run home. She also loved gathering family and friends around her table. She liked to have fun and was adventurous. One Christmas morning, she insisted we all go to the top of West Mountain to watch the sunrise before going back to the house to open presents.
She was involved in two service organizations -- PEO and the Epsilon Sigma Alpha Zeta Chi Chapter, serving several roles in each. She and Wally were also founding members of Hot Springs Baptist Church, where she helped in children's Sunday school classes for many years.
In addition to her parents, she was predeceased by her husband of 63 years, Wallace Ballentine, in 2017; her son, David, in 2005; and her daughter, Kim, in 2020; along with her brother, Cliff Bearden, and his wife, Kathryn Moore Bearden; and her sister, Elouise Bearden Smith.
She is survived by daughter, Valerie Ballentine Kuykendall (husband Davis); loving daughter-in-law, Leslie Cain Ballentine (husband Bill Kerst); son-in-law, Larry Poole; brother-in-law, Don Smith; grandchildren, Davis Kuykendall Jr. (Lauren), Shannon Kuykendall (Bobby Birchard), Angie Boiles, Kate Kuykendall (Josh Cardell), Shelby Ballentine Goodling (Shayne), Karah Poole, Amanda Poole and Emily Ballentine-Kerst; and great-grandchildren, Beau Ricketts, Lily Bankston and Franses David Goodling.
The family would like to thank the many caregivers she had over the last five years, especially Lori and Destiny Moody, for the many hours they spent with her, taking care of her great needs and providing friendship for her.
There will be a private burial service with family on a future date.
Online condolences at http://www.caruth-hale.com.