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I'm so sorry for your loss Sharon, I just loved Mr Holland
Roy Erskine Holland
Roy Erskine Holland, of Monroeville, AL, and most recently of Fernandina Beach, FL, passed away on September 25, 2022, at the age of 96. He was predeceased by his loving wife of 65 years, Elizabeth “Betty” Billingsley Holland and his brother Charles Ray Holland, Jr.
Roy was born in Brewton, AL on November 21, 1925 to the late Charles Ray Holland, Sr and Mae Cooper Holland. As a small child, his family moved to Mobile, where he grew up, graduated from high school, and attended Springhill College.
In November, 1943, at the age of 18, Roy enlisted in the Army Air Corps. After boot camp, he attended cryptographic school and in May of 1944 he departed from New York Harbor on the Queen Mary over to Scotland and eventually made his way to France where he spent most of his time during WWII in the towns of Nancy, Vittel, and Strasbourg. On May 7, 1945, while on night duty, he received a message to decipher that was of utmost importance. It stated that the Germans had signed an armistice and all hostilities were to end. It was signed by General Dwight Eisenhower.
After the war, Roy came back to Mobile to finish his accounting degree at Springhill College.
He met the love of his life, Betty, and they were married on Oct 23, 1948. Upon graduation, he began working at Vanity Fair, a textile company, and worked there for 39 years. His first job with Vanity Fair was in Jackson , AL and that is where he and Betty began raising their family, two sons and a daughter. In 1957 they moved to Monroeville, their home for the next 55 years.
Roy was a member of First Baptist Church and a deacon there for many years. He was also a Boy Scout leader and a member of the Kiwanis Club. He loved to squirrel and deer hunt with his sons. He loved a good movie, especially westerns, and he loved a good book. Roy never heard a joke that he didn’t remember and every time he repeated it to someone else, he could hardly get to the punchline without laughing in anticipation. He had his mother’s laugh.
Roy was a kind and gentle man to all he knew. He had a great smile. He had a stellar work ethic that was something for his children to aspire to but was such a hard act to follow. He taught his children about the importance of a firm handshake. He had many titles…Roy, Daddy, Dad, Pop, Pops, Grandaddy, PawPaw, Papa, Grandpa, Great Papa, and Uncle Roy.
In 2012, Roy and his wife Betty moved to Fernandina Beach to be close to their daughter and son-in-law and their family. Several years after, Roy would lose his bride. But despite this great loss, along with the many health issues he had to face in the years after, he had a great desire to live life to the fullest. There were such memories made…birthday celebrations, visits from family, watching his great-grands play baseball, football, basketball, and soccer, family cookouts, watching college football, vacations, and so much more. He also had the privilege of going on an Honor Flight with his son-in-law Darrell in 2017. That was an experience he said was one he would never forget as a WWII veteran, a great honor indeed!
Roy will be sadly missed by so many. Son, Steve (Rosemary) Holland, son, Scott (Karen) Holland, and daughter, Sharon (Darrell) Blanton. Roy also leaves behind his five grandchildren,
Heather Gwynn, Marybeth (Stan) Riley, Leah Nichols, Amber (Nate) Burns, and Neal (Kylie) Holland. And what a joy to live long enough to see sixteen great-grands born! Alicia (Stephen) Richardson, Madison and Holland Riley, Hayden and Mason Gwynn, Brodie, Brock, Bryant and Brynlee Nichols, Ellie and Linley Holland, and Keaghan, Karsyn, Kennedy, Nikolas and Nash Burns. To him his family was his greatest success story. He so loved each and every one! Roy will also be missed by his sister-in-law Sandra, many nieces and nephews, his most recent friends in Fernandina Beach and his longtime friends in Monroeville who kept in touch with him even when he was so far away.
Many, many thanks to the doctors, nurses, and CNAs of Baptist Medical Center Nassau and Community Hospice Warner Center that so attentively looked after Roy during his last weeks of life. The family was truly, truly blessed to have you by our side during this time. Thank you from the bottom of our hearts!
Lastly, Roy loved his Lord and Savior and is no doubt kicking up his heels in his heavenly home with his beloved Betty and all the family and friends who have gone before him. What a celebration they are all having and what a full and blessed life he lived here on earth!!
Anyone wanting to make a donation in Roy’s name, please do so at Community Hospice & Palliative Care online at communityhospice.com or 4266 Sunbeam Rd, Jacksonville, FL 32257.
A graveside service to honor Roy will be held on Nov 11, Veterans Day, at 2:00 at Pineville Cemetery in Monroeville. A reception will follow at the First Baptist Church.