Herbert Banton, 84, Albert Lea

Published 9:20 am Thursday, February 28, 2013

Funeral services for Herbert “Punchy” L. Banton, of Albert Lea, will be at 9:30 a.m. Saturday at Bonnerup Funeral Service, Albert Lea. The Rev. Richard Spande will officiate. Visitation will be from 4 to 7 p.m. Friday at Bonnerup Funeral Service, Albert Lea, and one hour before the service at the funeral home.

Herbert Banton

Herbert Banton

Herbert died on Wednesday, Feb. 27, 2013, at St. John’s Lutheran Home. He was 84.

He was born on Dec. 4, 1928, in Buckingham County, Virginia, the son of John and Maude (Scott) Banton. Punchy as he was known, graduated from Buckingham County High School and continued on to Randolf Baker College on a baseball scholarship.

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He worked in Lynchburg, Va., for a few years, and then entered the Brooklyn Dodgers chain as a professional pitcher. He played until 1956 in the Dodger chain. He continued playing baseball in Elmira, N.Y., Fort Worth, Texas, and Pueblo, Colo., then coming to Fairmont to play with the Southern Mini’s. It was in Fairmont that he met Norma Tow. They were married on Jan. 25, 1959, in Fairmont.

He managed Northrop Municipal Liquor for a few years and then in 1961, he and brother-in-law Raymond Tow purchased Harley’s Liquor in Albert Lea. Herb loved hunting, fishing, golfing and all sports.

Herbert is survived by two sons: William (Charlotte) Banton of Alden, Scott (Lisa) Banton of Pueblo, Colo.; grandchildren: Andrea (Nick) Miller of Minneapolis, Jesse Banton of Fort Carson, Colo., Bryce Banton, Alden; great-grandchildren Zane and Asher Miller, Dominic Banton; brothers-in-law and sisters-in-law: Don (Katherine) Tow, Jim Tow, Bonnie Tow, Lucy Tow and several nieces and nephews.

He was preceded in death by his parents John and Maude Banton, his wife, Norma, brothers, Wesley, Herman, Edmond and John, sister Elizabeth; brothers-in-law, Robert Tow, Raymond Tow, Vernon Tow, Harold Tow and sister-in-law Elizabeth Tow.