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Mary Holland

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Mary Kimball Holland 1912-2011 MANCHESTER, VT Mary Kimball Holland of Manchester, Vt., formerly of Bronxville, N.Y., died peacefully on April 5 at her home at Equinox Terrace. She was 98 years old. Mrs. Holland was born September 7, 1912, in Lexington, Mass., to Frank Reed Kimball and Catherine Arnold Kimball. She graduated from Northampton School for Girls (now Williston Northampton School) in 1931 and received a degree in music composition from Smith College in 1935. While at Smith, she was president of the Clef Club, a campus musical group, and was the founder and first president of the Smith College Flying Club. Following in her older sister Margaret's footsteps, she became an aviation enthusiast and flew all over the Northeast, as well as down to Washington, D.C., to court her future husband. As one person remarked, "How many people do you know who flew themselves to college in their own plane in the 1930s?" In 1936, she married G. Kenneth Holland, a specialist in the U.S. State Department and moved to Washington, D.C., where she was president of the local Smith College Club and vice president of the Junior League of Washington. During that time period, their first three children, Kim, Susan and Marcia, were born. From 1948 to 1950, Mrs. Holland lived in Paris while her husband served as the first permanent representative to UNESCO. In 1950, when her husband was named the president of the Institute of International Education in New York City, Mrs. Holland and her family returned to the United States, living temporarily in her birth home in Lexington, Mass. It was there that their fourth child, Wendell, was born. In 1951, the family moved to Bronxville, N.Y., where Mrs. Holland resided for 53 years. During her time in Bronxville, she served on the boards of the Westchester Smith College Club, the Westchester Chapter of the Association for Retarded Children, Bronxville Adult Education and the Bronxville PTA. She was also the president of the Bronxville Friends of the Philharmonic. Mrs. Holland loved music and was an accomplished pianist and cellist. As a member of the Junior League of Bronxville, she wrote music and lyrics for several Children's Theatre productions. She also was a member of the Song Pipers, a local women's singing group, conducted the neighborhood Hilltop Association Band each Christmas, and played Christmas carols at the Bronxville Field Club three nights running each year for more than 25 years. She also performed frequently at the Cosmopolitan Club in New York City, where she was a member. In addition, she wrote arrangements for "The Holland Family Orchestra" that appeared on television in the 1960s. After her move to Equinox Terrace, an assisted living facility in Manchester, Vt., she continued playing the piano for various events in the area and for her own pleasure until shortly before her death. Mrs. Holland traveled extensively, supporting her husband's work in international education around the world. She was conversant in three foreign languages. When her husband retired from the Institute of International Education in 1973, he became president of the Chateau de La Napoule, a Franco-American cultural center and art foundation in La Napoule, France, on the Cote d'Azur. Upon his sudden death in 1977, she assumed the presidency of the foundation for six years and remained a trustee emeritus until her death. Besides her husband, Mrs. Holland was predeceased by her daughter, Susan Sawyer Holland, who died in 1993. She is survived by two sons: K. Kimball Holland of Sherborn, Mass., his wife, Nancy Gilbert Holland; Wendell Allen Holland of Kimberton, Pa.; a daughter, Marcia S. Holland and her husband, Alan N. Wiegand, of North Rupert, Vt.; five grandchildren and two great-grandchildren. A service celebrating her life will be held at the Dorset Church in Dorset, Vt., on Saturday, May 21 at 3 p.m. There will also be an interment service at the Reformed Church in Bronxville, N.Y., on June 4. In lieu of flowers, contributions can be sent to Camphill Village USA, PO Box 1045, Kimberton, PA 19442.

Published in Bennington Banner on Apr. 25, 2011
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