Bernard W. Balser
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Salem - Bernard Wentworth Balser, a lifelong North Shore resident, died peacefully on November 27, 2019, at Masconomet Healthcare Center in Topsfield, Mass.
Bernie was born to Arthur E. Balser Sr. and Wilma (Wentworth) Balser on March 28, 1939, in Danvers, Mass., and was brother to Arthur E. Balser Jr. of Danvers, David K. Balser of Newburyport (who predeceased him in 2018), and Donald S. Balser of Marblehead.
Bernie experienced a wonderful childhood and "growing up" years in the neighborhoods of Danvers, graduating from Holten High School, and from Salem State College. Living in Salem and Beverly, Bernie worked initially in education and sales, and later for Electric Insurance Company in Beverly, and the Peabody Essex Museum in Salem.
Literature and authorship were lifelong passions, including articles on the arts and contributed poetry. His 2003 publication, Off Hillcrest Road, offers a detailed memoir of life in Danvers and on the North Shore during the post-war years leading into the 1960s, and is a testament to the people, time, and places of his upbringing, where he always remained firmly rooted.
Bernie is survived by brother Arthur and his wife Diane (Goodwin) Balser; brother Donald and his wife Linda (Goodwin) Balser; by his sister-in-law Susan (Esty) Balser; by nephews Arthur E. Balser III, Dana S. Balser, and Andrew W. Balser; and by his great-niece Madeleine I. Balser.
Bernie will be deeply missed by those who knew his humor and smile, and who shared his love of the North Shore and its history.

Relatives and friends are invited to attend Bernie's funeral service, which will be held graveside at Walnut Grove Cemetery, 30 Sylvan St., Danvers, on Thursday, December 5, at 10:30 a.m. Assisting the family with the arrangements is the Peterson-O'Donnell Funeral Home, 167 Maple St. (Route 62), Danvers. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in Bernie's memory to the Peabody Essex Museum, 161 Essex St., Salem, MA 01970. To share a memory or offer a condolence, please visit
Published on December 3, 2019


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Showing 10 of 8 posts

Brenda Foglietta
Dec 03, 2019
Beautiful in Blue was purchased for the family of Bernard W. Balser by Brenda Foglietta.  Send flowers
Barry Gilman
Dec 03, 2019
I am sorry for your loss my Dad and Mother knew Bernie very well he came to our home up Richards St,Danvers many times.
Bob Wilson
Dec 03, 2019
Bernie will be missed by all who knew him. He was a sincere, kind, and compassionate man with an innate ability to tell a good story. Deepest sympathy to Art and Donnie and their families.
Dec 02, 2019
I had the pleasure of being Bernie's nurse years back. I always looked forward to our visits. He was such a kind soul. I loved his stories and always looked forward to the conversation. You were one of the good ones Bernie. Rest in peace my friend.
Bill Buttimer
Dec 02, 2019
Bernie was one of the nicest people that I ever knew. He was very sincere and loved to laugh. He was a joy to be around and will certainly be missed.
Kathy McDonnell
Dec 02, 2019
Dear Don and Linda and Family,
I am so sorry to hear of your brothers’ passing. I hope all will be well and that the stories you share will keep his memory with you.
Peter Mackie
Dec 02, 2019
Bernie was a loyal friend whose kind and gentle spirit was always in evidence. His ability to find humor in all types of situations and be idealistic about the world around him, regardless of the circumstances, was truly inspirational. The world needs more Bernie Balsers.
David d'Entremont
Dec 02, 2019
Bernie, You know we love you....