Willie Elmer Holt, 93, of Forney went to his eternal home to be with Jesus, on February 2, 2023 after a brief illness. A memorial service will be held on Wednesday, February 8, 2023 at The Forum, First Baptist Church of Forney with Pastors Kirk Luecke and Charles Treadway officiating. Visitation will be at 10:00 a.m. at the church. The burial will follow later in the afternoon at the Midlothian Cemetery in Midlothian, Texas.
Willie was born to William Kelly and Willie Louise Roberts Holt on August 22, 1929 in Acworth, Texas. He was named in honor of his mother and his maternal grandfather. He was the number two child in a farming family consisting of his father and mother and ten children. He spent most of his young years as a farmer before leaving at a young age to work in the Texas oil fields. He then had a two year career in the United States Air Force as a secret code specialist in the Airways and Air Communications Service, headquartered in Alaska. Following military service, he started a carpentry building business and his family of two boys, David Michael Holt and Kenneth Dale Holt. The last half of his working career, he was an aircraft inspector at LTV Aircraft Corporation in Arlington, Texas, working on many major government projects. He retired from LTV with 33 years of employment.
Willie married his first wife, Bobbie Ruth Smith on January 4, 1948. They were married 44 years, until Bobbie passed away in July of 1992. While his sons were growing up, Willie was always actively involved in their pursuits. He was a blessing to his family, because he appreciated the life he had and loved his family even more. Both widowed, he later married Mary Etheridge, on August 14, 1993. They were happily married for 29 years. Willie and Mary traveled extensively even to trip to the Holy Lands, taken seven cruises to much of the world, snow skied too many mountains to count and then settled in Forney, Texas in 1999. They are active members of First Baptist Church in Forney. Willie served as a deacon, sang and played his guitar anytime gospel music was requested, and taught Sunday School classes there and in other Baptist churches for sixty plus years! In his later years, Willie wrote a weekly column for the local paper, Laymen’s Corner, where he shared the message and importance of a Christian life. Willie had a servant’s heart and volunteered for many years with Meals on Wheels and loved singing at area nursing homes.
Willie loved playing golf and was still playing at the age of 93! He was incredibly talented in playing the guitar and singing gospel music. He also loved to play dominoes. There were some weeks he was playing four afternoons a week! Later in life, he enjoyed writing where he wrote his weekly newspaper columns and published two books.
He is survived by his wife, Mary Holt of Forney; son, David Michael (Dianna) Holt of Midlothian; grandchildren, Chris Holt of Midlothian and Emily (Chris) Salinas of San Antonio; great-grandchildren, James Dale Holt, Abigail Holt, Salem Salinas, and Caiman Salinas. He is also survived by five siblings. He also embraced Mary’s family, daughter, Treva (Tony) Franklin of Sunnyvale and family; son, Randy Etheridge of Canton, and his family. He treated them as his own and they loved him dearly.
Willie is preceded in death by his son, Kenneth Dale Holt, granddaughter, Cori Holt, his parents and five siblings.
Those honored to serve as pallbearers are Chris Holt, James Holt, Tyler Franklin, Matthew Watson, Wesley Etheridge, and Todd Etheridge.