AURORA – After a decade of running races with determination, and a yearlong battle with cancer, Lt. Colonel William Robert Holstine, 47, of Aurora, Ill., crossed the finish line in this life on Feb. 4, 2014, and entered into eternal life.|
A devoted Christian, longtime soldier and passionate runner, Bill could identify with the words of the apostle Paul: "I have kept the faith; I have fought the good fight; I have finished the race." (2 Timothy 4:7).
Born April 2, 1966, Bill spent most of his life in the Midwest, raised by loving grandparents, Bill and Peggy Martin. Following graduation from Hinckley-Big Rock High School, he served two years in the U.S. Army before enrolling at Waubonsee Community College where he ran cross-country and was the first student to achieve NJCAA academic All-American honors. He transferred to Northern Illinois University where he participated in the ROTC program, graduated cum laude with a degree in finance, and was commissioned as a Second Lieutenant. In 2005, he earned his MBA from Olivet Nazarene University.
During college, Bill met Kimberly Beth Nall, who would become his devoted wife of 20 years. He and "Kimmie," as he affectionately called her, married in 1993, and settled in Aurora, where they resided for the past two decades. They were blessed with three children, Kaelie (15), Michael (13), and Patrick (10), of whom Bill was so proud.
Upon graduation, Bill embarked on a 25-year career as a financial advisor in the Chicagoland area, working for several prominent financial institutions before returning full-time to the Army in 2006. During his 29 years of honorable service, Bill advanced through both the enlisted and officer ranks, serving active duty and in the reserves. His favorite assignments included associate professor of military science at Wheaton College, a Joint Forces Command exercise and project manager for the Army Reserve Installation Management Directorate. He garnered numerous awards, including two Meritorious Service Medals, two Army Commendation Medals, two Bronze de Fleury Medals and a Joint Service Achievement Medal, and traveled to Honduras, Egypt, Kuwait, Germany and Korea. Bill will be posthumously awarded the Legion of Merit for his 29 years of dedicated service to the Army and his country.
Bill was able to combine both of his careers while teaching at Wheaton College. Teaching the senior finance class to cadets, he was inspired to author his book, "Faithful Stewardship – A Financial Planning Guide for the Christian Soldier," to help new lieutenants lead their soldiers to make good financial decisions.
Bill had a passion for real estate as well. He started his first real estate company, Western Property Development, in DeKalb in 1995, but it was his desire to help others that led to his most recent venture, Monopoly I, LLC, a collaboration with his childhood friend in Joplin, Mo., which has grown to a "family" of 65 share members.
Bill began running in 2003, completing the Chicago Marathon that year and again in 2006 and 2010; Boston in 2006, during a Nor'easter that threatened to cancel the marathon for the first time in Boston's history; and the Sunburst Marathon in South Bend where he crossed the finish line on the 50-yard line of his beloved Notre Dame Irish and accomplished his sub-three-hour goal. A competitive runner, he thrived on accumulating medals from numerous shorter races.
Bill will always be remembered for his love of life and devotion to his friends. He was well-known for his dancing ability, a talent that he often displayed and passed on to his sons. A longtime White Sox fan, he shared his love for the South Siders with his children, taught them to play ball, and helped coach his boys' baseball teams and his daughter's softball team. After his cancer diagnosis, his daughter's team presented the family with tickets to a Sox game on Aug. 10, 2013, where he was honored on the field as "Hero of the Game."
Visitation will take place from 1 to 6 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 9, at The Healy Chapel, 370 Division Drive, Sugar Grove, with the funeral at 1:30 p.m. Monday, Feb. 10, at Christ Community Church, 40W098 Galena Blvd, Aurora. Interment will immediately follow at Greenwood Cemetery, Hinckley. Those who wish to remember Bill in a special way can contribute to Wounded Warrior Project.
For further information, call 630-466-1330 or visit www.healychapel.com to sign the online guestbook.
Published in Daily Chronicle from Feb. 6 to Feb. 7, 2014