The Wahkiakum County Eagle - Established as The Skamokawa Eagle in 1891

Michael Balch


March 19, 2020

Michael Edward Balch died March 7, 2020 from kidney and heart failure. He bravely persevered through many health issues in the last months of his life.

Mike was born March 21, 1958, in Bellingham, to Herbert and Nymah (Galyean) Balch. Mike had many fond memories of growing up in the Sekiu and Clallam Bay communities. It was there he spent many hours fishing on his dad’s boat, making life-long friends and developing a love of photography.

He graduated from Clallam Bay High School in 1976 and continued his education at Pacific Lutheran University, where he graduated with a bachelors degree in communications. Mike then moved to Forks, where he was a DJ for two years at KVAC radio station. It was in Forks where Mike began his service to the community in law enforcement. His career moved him to Cathlamet in 1984. It was this community that Mike would call home. It was there he met and married the love of his life, Darlene (Hagedorn) Balch. They were married February 7, 1986. This union brought two sons, Jonathan Lewis Balch in 1987 and Christopher Michael Balch in 1989. Mike was strong in his walk with Christ. He served as a deacon at River of Life Assembly of God Church in Cathlamet for many years, up until the time of his passing. In 2018 Mike retired from law enforcement.

Mike was preceded in death by father Herbert Balch; mother Nymah Balch and son Jonathan Balch.

Survivors include his wife, Darlene Balch; son Christopher Balch; step-mother Sande Balch (Ken Jacobson); brother John Balch; brother Jeff (Rebecca) Balch; step-brother Jason (Tabatha) Meadows; daughter-in-law Brittney; four grandchildren and many nieces and nephews.

A private inurnment was held at Greenwood Cemetery. A memorial celebration of Mike’s life will be held at a later date.

Dowling Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements.


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