John R. "Pop" Holden, World War II, D-Day, Paris veteran, who landed on the beach of Normandy June 6, 1944, died at the age of 92.
He is preceded in death by the love of his life, Kathryn, his wife of 67 years.
He leaves his children, Skip of Myrtle Beach; Cliff and his wife Kathy of Asheville; Harriet Holden Altman and her husband David of Jacksonville; and Jayne Holden Chambers and her husband John of Fuquay-Varina. He loved his wife, his children, numerous grandchildren and great-grandchildren, and they adored him.
John was born in Greensboro, N.C. in 1921 where he attended city schools and Guilford College. In 1951, he moved his young family to Maysville, N.C., where he owned and operated Community Chevrolet for 31 years. In 1962, John moved his family to Jacksonville, where he and Kathryn lived in the same house on the golf course for the next 51 years.
John was a very generous and compassionate man known for his sense of humor. He looked after those less fortunate and could always bring a smile to people's faces. For years, he visited and took candy to two nursing homes weekly, and his visits were greatly anticipated. He dearly loved life, and in his lifetime, he and Kathryn enjoyed golf, boats, airplanes, golf carts, antique cars, horses and motor homes, as well as music, singing and dancing.
John and Kathryn loved to travel. One major event in John's life was when he and Kathryn went back to Europe on the 50th anniversary of D-Day and he was able to revisit all the places he was during the war. John received the Bronze Star and Purple Heart while serving our country in World War II.
John and his wife were members of Trinity United Methodist Church, where he was very active for more than 50 years. He loved his church, the many friends and much fellowship he experienced there. John was diligent in pursuing a relationship with God and he is now in a beautiful place like the beautiful man he was.
Memorials can be made to the Fellowship of Christian Athletes, CoastalNCFCA.org or Wounded Warriors Project, Woundedwarriorproject.org.
Funeral services will be held at Trinity United Methodist Church on Tuesday, April 8, at 2 p.m. Visitation will precede the service in the fellowship hall of the church at 12:30 p.m.
Condolences can be left for the family at Jonesfh.org and JDNews.com.