Nancy J. Sinkora

Nancy J. Sinkora, 69, passed away peacefully on Friday, September 6, 2019 with her loving husband at her side. Born at the Benedict Memorial Hospital in downtown Ballston Spa, NY on February 12, 1950, she was the daughter of Kenneth and Shirley Ballard.

Her brilliant mind brought her to the top of her graduating class, forever making her Grandma Dorman proud with her Valedictorian speech. Appreciation for literature, academia, poetry and the arts never faded; Nancy was an avid reader, beautiful poet and frequent visitor of the Clark Art Institute. Nancy became a Licensed Practical Nurse at Maplewood Manor in Ballston Spa for many years, retiring in 2000. She was devoted to her patients, bringing them joy and the best of care.

A free spirit who lived life on her terms, she will be forever remembered as the coolest hippie matriarch of unconditional love, always quick to embrace the best in those she loved. When Nancy believed in you, there wasn't anything that couldn't be accomplished. Her greatest genuine happiness came from the successes of loved ones, always the first anyone wanted to call and share good news - her overwhelming pride and excitement was contagious. Nance was the center of endless ripples of laughter and compassion widely spread throughout family and friends. A welcoming environment of warmth surrounded Nancy and all around her - be it at the infamous dining room table or out and about - everyone's day was better for experiencing Nance. Her children and grandchildren were her greatest joy and she was always their number one supporter and cheerleader, celebrating every accomplishment big or small. In them she leaves her legacy of peace and unconditional love, the power of prayer and acceptance.

Family gatherings will not be the same without her laughter, but her exuberant spirit will be always present. Rock on MaPizza, Laughing Lady and Motorcycle Mama, we will forever know your love, and be always better for it.

Nancy is survived by her adoring husband and loving partner of more than 20 years, John; children Tracy Balch (Dan Day), Naomi Baker, and David Quillinan (Megan); grandchildren Brandyn Balch, Tylor Balch (Bri), Joshua Moran, Gloria Moran (Geoff), Sara Allen, Alec Svoboda (Morgan), David Quillinan Jr., Maggie Quillinan, and Salvatore Quillinan; mother Shirley Ballard; brother Kenneth Ballard; sister Sue Fish and many many loving nieces, nephews and cousins.

A private celebration of life and services will be held with close family and friends.

Please share with us all your best Nance stories. Peace and love to all….love love.

Guest Book

Sandy Moran

I will miss seeing her and spending time bragging about our kids and grandkids. We had so many chats about our family in common. Remarkable lady. I wonder if she is bragging on her family to Jesus now...

Maria Nigro

Nancy was my best and longest friend. We met in 1968 and remained friends throughout the rest of our lives. We could go years without speaking or seeing each other because of the distance between us, but our conversation and deep friendship would resume immediately upon talking again. It's impossible to put into words how much Nancy meant to me. We went through many experiences together throughout the time we had before I moved out of NY. The crazy days of our youth.... Hippies always. I will miss her greatly, but I rejoice in knowing that we will be reunited in eternity and she is in the arms of our loving Father. See you soon, my loving friend. You are in my heart always.

Marian and Dave Adams

You were a wonderful women and friend. I will never forget how AJ was so excited for us to meet at Jen and TJ's wedding. We had a lot in common and such a pleasure when we talked. You will be missed. So happy I last got to see you at Jenny's birthday party. Peace out Nancy!! Rock hard in heaven and give my son AJ, a big hug and kiss. Love you Marian and Dave.


I met Nancy 33 years ago and her love and acceptance have been a rock solid force in my life ever since. I had just spent the previous night flirting with her daughter at an all night church fundraiser. Little did she know that very soon after her first grandchild would come into all of our lives. That was a very difficult and emotionally challenging time for a very young couple to start a family. But from the moment Naomi and I told Nancy we were pregnant she expressed only love, excitement and support. She did not judge the people she loved. That was not her nature. What Nancy did was share her overwhelming love and exuberant pride and would always make you feel like the greatest version of yourself. I would like to take a moment and give a little of that back to her.
I feel a deep honor to have known you Nancy. I am proud of you for showing the world what unconditional love is. Your infectious laughter always lit up a room. Your adventurous spirit could not be stopped. You had such great style. You were a dear and cherished friend to so many. In you was the truest spirit of god I have known.


I love you so much, grandma. You raised a strong family, full of compassion and understanding. You will be missed so much every day, but I know you are here with us. In a sunny day, in a breeze, in a passing are here every day to tell us all how much you love us back. I love you so much.

-Ty guy


In our family, if someone starts pouring out love towards someone else, saying how proud they are of them to point of loving embarrassment... They’d likely ask, are you going all Grandma on me now? To be grandma, is to shower someone with love and pride. And now it’s our turn to carry that legacy. We can start here, at this service, as we all shower grandma Nancy with love, memories, prayers and, of course, so so much pride for her, her life and her spirit.

I’ll start be stating the obvious, Grandma - is – the - coolest. And she took pride in that. Not just the coolest grandma, but simply the coolest person. She told me that even in the hood of Schenectady, that she, this beautiful petite white hippie girl, would knock on the front door of a home at 1 am, and those, who had yet to meet her, would give her a funny look, as others would push them to the side and say, Nance is cool, no really, she’s the coolest you’ll see. I can imagine that the next time Grandma would walk into this home she’d be cheered for the same as when she would arrive at one our family parties. What brought Grandma pride was that they knew she held no judgment towards them, she was true peace, love and acceptance – while also being super duper cool.

You have to be pretty cool if your grandchildren change your name, not to gram gram, grammy, grand mama, or one of those cutesy names, but to MaPizza. Hanging with Grandma meant creative make-believe games, funny stories, Zelda championships and of course, lots of pizza. She was the coolest, most creative and silliest Grandma. Her creativity and silliness make up two of my favorite childhood memories.

One of being cuddled up with the other grandkids, eating pizza, and listening to her tell the stories she wrote of a young Thumbelina falling through the drainage pipes and befriending a rat. By the end, the pretty little fairy was in her torn-up dress covered in mud, riding on the back of the rat to go save others. That image has always been in my mind and inspired much of who I am. She defined “cool” for me, as being different and as love and acceptance. That story also, consequently, made me love rates. So much that people in NYC would look me as if I’m absolutely crazy, as I try to call the subway rats over with food.

My other favorite childhood memory was after watching something on the television about a person with no arms or legs. We started talking about it with Grandma, we couldn’t imagine what that would be like. So she then came up with a game that included tapping each of our legs and arms together and have us try to move around and do normal things, get on the couch, play the super Nintendo, eat pizza – all of which we obviously could not figure out. All of us could not stop laughing. And at the same time, it was one of those moment where grandma helped instill the ridiculously strong sense of empathy we all have.

All of the words that motivate me, that I’m proud to be a part of me, are the same that Grandma would share with us. Love, empathy, inclusivity, and, wanting to be cool - but cool meaning to be different, to stand out, to be silly, to be adventurous, perhaps to be covered in mud and riding a rat (which is still a personal dream of mine).

When I found out that Grandma had passed, I was waiting with Geoff for a train to go to NYC. I had on ripped up blue pleather jacket, with this lacy white hippy shirt and an orange pleather skirt. I had a hard time changing out of that outfit once I found out, because I know Grandma would have thought it was cool, and I know I would have never put those pieces together without her hippy influence on my style as a teenager. I wanted Grandma to see my outfit, I wanted her to be proud of it.

I was so excited when Grandma visited me in NYC while I was in my Amercops program. I was excited to show her the tapestry on my wall, the antique table she gave me with a giant vase and flowers on it, and to share my stories - how the kids in Spanish Harlem that I work with, somehow think I’m pretty cool too. She was, of course, prouder than anyone could be. She was always there, loving me and being proud of everything I did and sharing bits of pieces of her life and self, that I’ve made my own.

More recently, without even saying that much, she’s shared her spirituality with me. I’ve realized that the peace and light heartedness she has cannot be accomplished without faith. I don’t think that has to be religious faith, but faith and spirituality. A belief in yourself, in others, in the universe, that things will be okay, that peace is possible. There are so many unknowns, and having that faith makes those unknowns okay. Grandmas faith allowed her to pass in complete peace and happiness. And while we all miss her so much - her faith, her love, her peace that she gave to each of us before leaving, has given us as much peace as is possible while we go on without her physically here with us.

Some faiths say the spirit sticks around with us for a few days before going to the next life. I had moment with Grandma on Saturday. Everyone started coming over to Josh’s and I was feeling light headed, empty, sad and anxious. I went to the little bench over there and cried. Then I felt her, right there, sitting next to me, with her arm around me. And of all things that could be said or one might think would be siad, words of wisdom from that afterlife, encouragement, silence…. Her spirit said to me “this is pretty freakin cool. I literally just appeared here next to you. No idea where I’ll be next. I just keep poppin up all over the place and being with people I love. She said I love you sweetie, its okay.” And I just cried, but with no more anxiety, just love and laughter.

Thank you, Grandma. For always being there and forever being a part of me that makes me proud. You are definitely going to be the coolest spirit in heaven. I know they’ll be cheering for you when you enter the room. I love you so much.


Aunt Nance you were such an amazing women so strong and so intelligent. Always being there for anyone in need you listen and give great advice. Shit girl your the first person I told I was gay and you said so what we love you! I'll miss your laugh the most you were always happy no matter what life challenges brought you. When we first met 30 years ago I knew we be friends for life just wish we had more time together I will miss you always and you will always be in my heart. May you Rest in Peace. Until we meet again. Peace out old laughing lady

My heart goes out to her best friend and husband John and to all her children and grandchildren ❤️

Michael Kingsley

Your one of a kind. The best and greatest friend anyone could have. I was blessed to be apart of your life and you will be in our hearts for eternity. My you rest in peace my friend until we meet again I will always love you Aunt Nance ❤️

Amy Perka

I met Nancy about 10 years ago when my fiance' Scott introduced me to her son Dave and his wonderful family. I didn't get to spend much personal time with her, but her love shone for all those around her when I was in her presence. I felt instantly accepted and she commented on all the photos I posted on Facebook of our family just like they were her own. May she rest in eternal peace and keep guiding all her loved ones from above. It was a pleasure to have known you Nancy. Love, Amy

Pamela Ciaccio

She was an amazing woman and I am better for having known her! I will cherish the moments I got to interact with her. She truly was an angel among us. All my love and prayers to all her family and friends! I will carry her with me always

A Friend

“Long May you Run” Neil Young

Roxanne Howe

My dearest Aunt Nance,
May you rest in peace sweet angel I am going to miss calling you and having our talks on the phone but know that I will cherish all of the memories from a little girl to the woman that I am today. Thank you for going through my journey with me. I am blessed to have had you and your family welcome me into their lives ❤

Until we meet again Fly High Sweet ANGEL

Corrina Navarette

My Godmother Nancy I love you so much. I will always cherish all the memories and the very long talks we had.... I already miss your voice. Thank you for all your guidance and always being there when I needed an ear. And every time she reminded me how much she was proud of my sister and I, went on and on about our kids and all the kids in the family. How proud she was and love watching everyone grow. Love Love Cory

Richard Gorman

To Nancy's family .... Please accept my condolences on her passing and I hope your sorrow turns into pleasant memories that will be cherished in your hearts and bring smiles on your faces forever.