Michael FP Ball 1965-1989
Michael Francis Patrick Ball was born in Rochford Essex on Sunday 9th May 1965. He was raised along with his younger brother Trevor by their Irish parents Marie (Dunne) and Ernie, who himself had a career as a serviceman with the Irish Guards. The family moved to Portsmouth in 1972, where they ran a fish and chip shop.
took up piano lessons at the age of six and joined the Royal Marines
Cadet Force as a fife player two years later. He served with the detachment
until the age of sixteen when he made his way to Deal to join the Royal
Marines Band Service on 7th September 1981. He joined as a brother of
2/81 Troop, who initially had to undergo sixteen-weeks basic training..
the first extended basics for any troop. Michael then went on to spend
a further two and half years studying as a flute player, he was also
very proficient on piccolo, tenor saxophone and was brilliant with the
Ball made it known that he wanted to complete twenty-two years’
service in the Royal Marines.. sadly, he wasn’t given the chance..
aged just twenty-four, he was cruelly taken in the cowardly bombing
at Deal Barracks on the morning of the 22nd September 1989. He was a
little under the weather on that dreaded Friday morning.. Maureen had
advised him to call in sick and stay in bed.. although he was running
a little bit late, he dismissed it and went into work as normal. The
bomb detonated at the recreational centre changing room and the building
collapsed. Michael and eight of his colleagues were killed instantly,
including his troop brother Tim Reeves, another musician died soon after
in the operating theatre, another passed away twenty-six days later
and the atrocity left another twenty-one injured.