James L. Holt Battle Creek James L. Holt "The Pony Guy", age 85, passed away Friday, October 5, 2012. He was born March 17, 1927 to Henry Holt and Annie (McCoy) Holt in Fort Gay, WV. In 1934, at age 7, his family moved to Michigan. It was the first time he saw a vehicle with wheels and had store bought sliced bread. James was in the United States Marine Corp
. during WWII
, serving his country for a year and half. One of his assignments was to transport service men across the North Sea. In 1956 he married Virginia Baines, and was married for 54 years. James was a truck driver for 46 years, retiring from Brooks Foundry. He was involved with 4-H horses for over 40 years. He spent every night in the horse barns during fair week for many decades. He was a mentor to many children often more than one generation of family. He also had "pony parties" for several decades. He would travel from Grand Rapids to Indiana, Jackson to Benton Harbor to provide thousands of kids the opportunity to ride a pony. Jim was also known for his pipe which he was never without. He could walk into a room and people would know he was there by the smell of his pipe. He will be greatly missed by all who knew him. James is survived by daughter, Leanor Brooker; grandson, Mike (Kara) Brooker; and great-grandson Levi. He was preceded in death by his parents; son-in-law, Steve Brooker; brother, Grant; sisters, Pansy, Carrie, LouVerna, Nancy, Alma, Henrietta, Jean; son, Michael D. Visitation will take place at Baxter Funeral & Cremation Service on Wednesday, October 10, 2012 from 2:00 to 4:00 p.m. and 6:00 to 8:00 p.m. A funeral service will take place at 1:00 p.m. on Thursday, October 11, 2012 at the funeral home with Pastor James Codde officiating. In accordance with his wishes cremation will take place. Memorial contributions may be directed to Salvation Army or Good Samaritan Hospice Residence. Arrangements by Baxter Funeral & Cremation Service.