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Mark J. Ballestrini

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Mark J. Ballestrini Obituary
Mark J. Ballestrini April 30, 1959 - July 19, 2013 Preston- Mark J. Ballestrini, of Preston, CT, died suddenly on Friday, July 19, 2013 at the William W. Backus Hospital in Norwich. He was 54. A well-respected businessman and civic leader in eastern Connecticut, Mark was the Vice President of the Byrnes Agency Insurance, which he started working for in 1982. He served as President of the Three Rivers Community College Foundation Board and was a member of the Norwich Community Development Corporation. Mark had been training for the Tough Mudder competition. He was a life-long body builder, completed a marathon in 2002, and founded a Youth Wrestling Club in Preston. He loved spending time in the sun at the beach here and in Anna Maria Island, FL. An Italian with a great fondness for wine, he was a winemaker and was in the early stages of creating a vineyard at his home in Preston. Mark Joseph Ballestrini was born to William and Dorothy (Mitterer) Ballestrini on April 30, 1959 in Norwich and was raised Gales Ferry. He went on to graduate from Ledyard High School where he wrestled varsity, and then received a bachelor's degree of Science in Business Administration from the University of Connecticut. On June 6, 1981, Mark wed his high school sweetheart Nadinia Moran at Our Lady of Lords Church. They had two daughters: Stephanie, 28, of Providence, RI; and Tanya Corrine, 25, of Norwich. After a traumatic health incident in 2009, Mark devoted himself to god and found another family in faith. He discovered strength in a family bible study at home, surrounded by the light of family, friends, and god. Mark's hobbies and interests fueled his generosity. As a wrestler and great admirer of those in uniform, he supported the Wounded Warrior Project. He fostered creativity through his daughters and wife; supported The Spirit of Broadway Theater; Friends of Maria; the ASPCA; and Three Rivers Community College. In addition to his wife and daughters, Mark is survived by his parents; two brothers, Bill Jr. and his wife, Judy, of Gales Ferry; and David and his wife, Heather, of Preston. Although he was a father of two, he was a godfather to many. In addition, his beloved nieces, nephews, family members and friends also survive him. Mark was known as an aggressive and successful businessman with a compassionate heart. He also loved cutting his lawn, spending time on the water jet skiing and boating, and sipping wine with his wife on their front porch. A service will be held at St. Luke's Lutheran Church in Gales Ferry on Wednesday with greetings from 9-12pm and a service to follow. Colorful dress, jeans and pumps are requested for the attire. In lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations be made to the Wounded Warrior Project, PO Box 758517, Topeka, KS 66675. Please visit www.churchandallen.com to leave an online condolence for the Ballestrini family.

Published in Norwich Bulletin on July 22, 2013
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