LT Colonel Ralph Thomas Holmes
1943 - 2021
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LT Colonel Ralph Thomas Holmes
LT Colonel Ralph Thomas Holmes was born November 17, 1943 in Headland, AL. He died on February 20, 2021 at 6:15 PM. The funeral will be at Palo Alto Church of Christ in Panama City, FL on Thursday February 25, 2021, with a viewing from 1-2PM and a memorial service from 2-3PM.
I am Ralph Thomas Holmes. Most would call me Ralph, but family would call me Thom.
I was a soldier and a journalist. I was good at both; taking care of my soldiers and getting real news on paper for every kind of eye to read. I always read the obituaries. I was a good husband and am survived by my dear and precious wife Susie, she is so special to me, and my stepdaughter Jessica, along with my two grandchildren "shoeless" Jack and pretty Juliet.
My mother was Hortense Olivia Hamm Holmes and my father was George Glenwood Holmes. My mother was a school teacher and my father a Baptist preacher for a time and then self employed. My brother is Phillip Holmes and my sister is Karen Boyd, both younger than I. I loved them all so dearly.
I was a reporter first at 18 for the Post Herald in Birmingham while attending Howard College. I started as a copy boy and worked my way up. I covered local news, city council meetings that met at night and took the police calls.
At 19, I interviewed Dr King. I was there and reported the march on Selma Montgomery and covered the 16th street Baptist church bombing.
In 1970 I began working for the Birmingham News and in 1973 became Capital Bureau Chief Reporter there and stayed such until 1985.
In 1965 I was a draftee for the army during the Vietnam War. I was sent to Germany for my time and went from private to Lt Colonel. I would say "that ain't bad for a boy from Headland, AL."
I've interviewed John Glenn and worked for the Commissioner Charles Bishop as Public Relations Director for the Department of Agriculture.
I was a good husband and had a good wife in Susie. We were married at Palo Alto Church of Christ on August the 4th, 2001. She is a very special person. I know the good Lord and I'll be happy to see Him with my mother there as well. I've lived a good life.
Keeping things simple is what I liked to go by.
Kent Forest Lawn Funeral Home; 2403 Harrison Avenue; Panama City, FL 32405; 850- 763-4694

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Published in Panama City News Herald from Feb. 22 to Feb. 23, 2021.
01:00 - 02:00 PM
Palo Alto Church of Christ in Panama City
Memorial service
02:00 - 03:00 PM
Palo Alto Church of Christ in Panama City
Memories & Condolences
Guest Book sponsored by The News Herald
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1 entry
February 23, 2021
May God bless you and your family in this time of sorrow. I am Tommy's(what we called him) 1st cousin. I am 2 yrs. younger than him & haven't seen him in over 50 yrs as after graduating Auburn my husband & I live in Houston, Tx. I will keep you & your family in my prayers.
Anne Hamm Garrison
Anne Hamm Garrison
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