James Frances Holman

Apr 9, 1936 - Feb 26, 2022

EAST ORANGE, NJ - James Frances Holman, 85, passed away on February 26, 2022, at home in Varnville, SC surrounded by his family. He was educated in the Jasper County Public School System then Bethune Cookman College, in Daytona Beach Florida. James was married to the late Evelyn Holman for 58 years and together relished the blessings of five children: James, Rodney Sr., Barry, Dwayne Sr., and Alicia. As a faithful man of God and stalwart community servant, James maintained a long professional career as the proprietor of Liberty Insurance Agency, Hartz Mountain Industries, Inc., Washington National Insurance, Mutual of Omaha Insurance, the City of East Orange, South Orange Parking Authority, and the NJ State Senate Offices. A memorial service will be held on March 26, 2022, from 11:00 am – 1:00 pm at New Vision Baptist Church 100 Warrington Pl. East Orange, NJ and will conclude with a legacy tree planting ceremony immediately following memorial service at Hoffman Park, 148 Hoffman Blvd., East Orange, NJ.

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“We are confident, I say, and willing rather to be absent from the body, and to be present with the Lord.” II Corinthians 5:8 James Frances Holman passed away on Saturday, February 26, 2022, at the age of 85, surrounded by his family in Varnville, SC. Daddy was affectionately known as Pee Wee or Frances. He received a call from the Lord saying, “It’s time to come home, my son. It is time to rest and let your work speak for you. Well done, good and faithful servant.” Frances’ battle with medical issues in this past year showed his courage in facing life’s challenges with a smile. Daddy was a trooper and stayed strong until the end. His faith in God carried him along this journey with ups and downs, but he never wavered in his faith. Frances was born to the late Mary Holman and the late Jesse Jenkins on April 9, 1936, in Pineland, SC. He attended Jasper County Public Schools, and upon graduation from high school, he furthered his education at Bethune Cookman College. Frances lived in Pineland, but for some reason, you would always find him in Estill, SC. Hmmm, I wonder why?? That’s where he met the love of his life, Evelyn Holman, who became his childhood sweetheart. On August 4, 1957, he made Evelyn his Queen, and they spent 58 years married but a total of 64 years together. From this union five children were born: James, Rodney Sr., Barry, Dwayne Sr., and Alicia. He had three sisters, Janie O’Kelly, Veronica Ling, and Eleanor. Frances was fortunate to have another set of brothers and sisters he was raised with: John H. Murphy, Edward Darien, Alvin Darien, John Darien, Katie Devers, Zelphia Major, Latrelle Polite, Mary Gillison, and Gloria Grayson. Frances loved to play tennis and basketball. According to him, Uncle Johnny and him were better than LeBron James and Dwayne Wade. Frances also loved to entertain and was the life of the party for all ages. Let us not forget him running out to play his pick-it. Pick 3 4 6 mega power, he had to play. He used to say, “Got to be in it to win it.” Of course, his first love was spending time with family and traveling with friends of 64 years of friendship. Frances was a provider for his family. His employment throughout the years consisted of Hartz Mountain, Washington National Insurance, and Mutual of Omaha Insurance, which led him to open his own insurance agency, Unity Insurance Agency. In 1980, Frances was employed with the City of East Orange, as a Legislative Aide to the 5th Ward Council Members. Someone once said, Jim may be there for the 5th Ward, but he assisted the entire City Council and had a relationship with all members of council, and no one ever questioned his loyalty or the fact of keeping their conversations confidential. He later moved to the Department of Property Maintenance as an Inspector, where he stayed until his retirement in 2001. Frances was also a member of the East Orange Auxiliary Police. Upon his retirement, he found himself with time on his hands and decided to do what he does best. He went to work again shortly after retirement to keep his sanity with the South Orange Parking Authority, as well as held a position with Governor Richard Codey, working as State Legislature Security for the State Senate Office. In 2005, he decided he was ready to retire and moved to his beloved South Carolina. Frances was actively involved in his community and was once a member of the East Orange Democratic County Committee. He and Evelyn were involved in many campaigns and had a love for politics. He opened his home to many campaigns and meet ‘n greets during the years. However, the biggest campaigns ever for him were the ones for his daughter. He was a proud father the day she was sworn in as 5th Ward Council in 2006 and continued to campaign with her as she embarked on her fifth term in 2021. He managed that campaign through to a victory. Frances was a member of Bethel Baptist Church and sang with the Sons of Bethel Choir and the Junior Jubilee Choir. He was also a Youth Coordinator. Daddy loved the Lord and gave his all to the church. Preceding him in death and waiting his arrival in Heaven are: his wife, Evelyn; son, Rodney Sr.; his parents, Mary Holman and Jesse Jenkins; his brother, John H. Murphy; sisters, Janie O’Kelly, Mary Wilkerson, and Gloria Grayson; and special uncle and aunt, Edward and Katie Darien. He leaves to cherish and honor his memories: his devoted children, James (Gale) of Los Angeles, CA, Barry (Joyce) of Varnville, SC, Dwayne Sr. (Tywona) of Bloomfield, NJ, and Alicia (Wayne) of East Orange, NJ; his goddaughter, Robin Foster of Cumberland, MD; his 10 grandchildren, Taniquah, Rodney Jr., Quianna, and Vincent of East Orange, NJ, Alicia and Alandus of Winston-Salem, NC, Amir of South Orange, NJ, Dwayne Jr., Amanda, and Elias of Montclair, NJ; his 12 great-grandchildren, DaJaan, Sanaii, Sariah, Beautiful, and Laila of East Orange, NJ, King, Alaysia, Alaynah, Ahmad, and Ahkeem of Winston-Salem, NC, and Xavier and Ezekial of Montclair, NJ; his sisters, Veronica Ling of New York, Eleanor of Maryland, Katie of Chicago, IL, Zelphia (James), LaTrelle (Carl), and John (Mary) of Pineland, SC; brothers, Edward (Ada) and Alvin (Jerry) of Savannah, GA; special daughter, Crystal Holman of Montclair, NJ; and a host of nieces, nephews, other family, and friends. We will always carry your memory in our hearts. We know to be absent from the body is to be present with the Lord. Rest easy, for you are at the feet of the Master, so enjoy his Kingdom of Glory. You never said goodbye. You always said see you later or so long. Daddy, we love you forever and a day. See you later and so long......