August 17th 2019 will forever be etched in time in honor of Coach Wardell Ballentine.
Although born in Pulaska, Tennessee, Ballentine planted many seeds in Louisiana from Natchitoches to Alexandria to Baton Rouge.
A huge staple in his community, loved ones came to honor his name at the dedication ceremony of stadium at Frank O’ Hunter Park.
Many remarks were given from family, friends, city officials and others. One thing that they all mentioned in common was his love for teaching. He was more than a coach, but a educator and he was dedicated to teaching and encouraging those that came after him.
“Daddy taught us to be givers. He taught us that people come first.”
Ballentine never “met a stranger” and had the ability to bring people together.
With an unanimous 7-0 vote from the city council, it became clear that this was needed.
“Things like this have to happen. Stadiums got to be named, street needs to be named. We got to do the things we have to do to let our history be known.”
Ballentine was an educator and coach in the Rapides Parish school system for 38 years. He also held membership in the Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity, Inc., Alexandria Coliseum Board and the Alexandria Business and Civic League.