Michel Baille

By July 19, 2013 Obituaries

Michel Baille, age 83, a resident of Charleston, SC and the Jura region of France, passed away on Thursday, July 18, 2013 in his Charleston home in the loving company of his wife of 58 years, Helen Baille, and their family.

Born in Normandy, France on September 14, 1929 to Claude Baille and Marie-Louise de Casabianca Baille, Michel continued his family’s legacy of equestrian excellence, becoming a champion show jumper in France before bringing his exceptional talents across the ocean. He came to the U.S. in 1954 to marry Helen, with whom he had fallen in love while both were university students in France. They married in Pennsylvania and eventually moved to Michigan, where they raised their five children while he built a thriving business training thoroughbred racehorses. His work ethic and energy were unparalleled.

Michel appreciated solid handshakes, cloth napkins, and the ritual of a fine meal. Throughout his life, he especially loved playing bridge and spending time with his colorful extended family in France.

Survivors include his wife, Helen Benson Baille, of Charleston, SC; daughters Audrey Baille Gaia-Paix of Flint, MI, Daphne Baille of Chicago, IL, Christina Baille Warren (David) of Newaygo, MI; sons Jacques Baille (Lisa) of Travelers Rest, SC, and Philip Baille of Goshen, KY; and grandchildren Jacob, James, Nathan, Bryson, and Keliana. He also is survived by four sisters, a brother, and numerous relatives in the U.S. and abroad.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to: Camp Crazy Legs – Attention Gift Processing – 1687 Tullie Circle, Atlanta, GA 30329 or United Cerebral Palsy – 1825 K Street, NW Suite 600, Washington, DC 20006.

A memorial celebration will be held on Saturday, July 20, 2013 at 11:00 AM in Simplicity Lowcountry Funeral Home – 7475 Peppermill Parkway Suite E, North Charleston, SC 29418. Reverend Father Bob O’Connell will be officiating the services. Private interment will be in France.

Arrangements by Simplicity Lowcountry Cremation & Burial services, North Charleston, SC.


  • Andrea Perino says:

    What a loving tribute to a talented, elegant and charismatic man. Daphne and family, you are in our prayers.
    Lots of love, Andrea

  • Kathy Downen says:

    Dear Helen,
    I am out of town and will be gone for two more weeks. I was so sorry to hear of Michel’s passing. He was always so kind to me and you have been a devoted wife.He wll be greatly missed by all. My mother always thought he was such a gentleman.
    Love to you,