Henry Holmes

Henry William Holmes

ARLINGTON, Va. - After 86 long and joyous years, Henry William Holmes transitioned through this life on Oct. 23, 2012, at Halquist Memorial Inpatient Center in Arlington.

Henry William Holmes, also known as "Herk," was the youngest of eight children born to the late Ella and Joseph Holmes on Aug. 4, 1926, in Salisbury, N.C. He received his high school diploma from Price High School. He was drafted into the U.S. Army in 1945 and completed his tour of duty with an honorable discharge. He returned to Salisbury and was employed by the cotton warehouse.

On Aug. 4, 1951, he married Ira L. Patterson. In 1957, they left Salisbury for better employment opportunities in Washington, D.C. Henry worked for Walter Reed Army Hospital as a warehouse supervisor for the Pharmaceutical Department. After faithful service in this position, he retired on disability in 1980.

He became a member of St. John Christian Methodist Episcopal Church in 1980 under the pastorate of Rev. William L. Austin Sr. Due to his great enthusiasm for God and the church, he joined the Trustee Board, where he was often seen performing the duties associated with that office. He was one of the first male members of the Fellowship Club and served as Treasurer for the Traveler's Club. He used his "I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me" attitude in singing baritone solos with the Annie B. Nelson Chancellor Choir and the Male Chorus.

Herk read at least three newspapers cover to cover every day. He was a jokester and a tease, always bringing joy and laughter to those in his presence. He loved his family and he loved life. Affectionately known as "Daddy," he was a caring father, a loving grandfather and a gentle giant to others.

He is survived by his beloved wife of 61 years, Ira L. Holmes of the home; his children, Phyllis Lee (Gregory) of Maryland, Delores Woods of Salisbury, N.C., Joseph Holmes Sr. (Carmaletha) of Maryland; his elder sister, Ms. Fannye Holmes of Salisbury, N.C.; nine grandchildren; two great-grandchildren; special nephew James Holmes (JoAnne) of Charlotte, N.C.; and a host of nephews, nieces, cousins, and friends.

Service: Funeral is Tuesday, Oct. 30 at 10:30 a.m. at St. John Christian Methodist Church in Washington D.C.

Arrangements are by Briscoe-Tonic Funeral Home, Waldorf, Md.

Obituary is courtesy of Noble and Kelsey Funeral Home in Salisbury.

Published in Salisbury Post on Oct. 28, 2012