James Stutsman Ball died peacefully at Intermountain Medical Center of complications from cancer on July, 29th 2013.
He was born in Reno, Nevada on September 13, 1934. He leaves behind Janet O'Hara Ball, his wife of 42 years, his sister Lucy Mish, son Douglas Ball, MD and two stepchildren Beth Franklin, MLA and Chris Pyle MS, grandchildren Griffin and Quinn Franklin and Brendan and Ryan Pyle.
A celebration of his life will be planned at a later date.
James obtained a BS in physics at California Institute of Technology in 1956, and a PhD in physics at the University of California, Berkeley in 1963. From 1963-1968 he was an Associate Professor at University of California, Los Angeles
. During his employment at UCLA he was awarded the prestigious Alfred P. Sloan fellowship.
In 1968, Jim became an associate of physics at the University of Utah. Upon retiring, he wrote "I joined the Physics department in 1968. The department had a tradition of using rafting trips (Project Gurgle) as a recruitment tool and my first contact with many members of the department was on a Yampa-Green river trip. One high point of that first visit was crashing the physics chairman's new Toyota Land Cruiser, an event that eventually led to the installation of the present 4-way stop at S.Temple and University."
Aside from his career in physics at the University of Utah, Jim was also involved in International High Energy Particle Theory. He spent sabbaticals working with colleagues in the US and abroad- In Chicago (Fermi lab), Aspen (Aspen Center for Physics) Geneva (CERN), Annecy (LAPP) and Paris (École Polytechnique). Jim also served on the Utah Supercollider Task force in 1986-1987.
In addition to his career, James gained a great deal of personal satisfaction in raising his three children with his wife Janet. He was an avid outdoorsman and enjoyed hiking, camping, backpacking, river rafting, skiing and scuba diving. He also enjoyed water- polo, tennis, volleyball and basketball. He was an enthusiastic chef. He was the personification of the cliché "a life well lived" He was a "tilter at windmills," a large presence everywhere he went. He was "not much with a hammer, but a whiz with a nail gun." He was well loved by friends and family, known for both for his acerbic wit and depth of compassion. He was a gentle man.