Peaceful 09

Raymond Edward Holman

October 11, 1935 ~ October 19, 2021 (age 86)


Raymond Edward Holman, born October 11, 1935 in the Red Fork community of west Tulsa, Oklahoma. As a young teenager he worked in the shop of Mr. Ralph Dubois’ Ornamental Iron where he recalls such projects as the metal ornamentation of the Tulsa World & Tribune buildings. Growing up during the Depression and the days of WW II his interest in aviation led him to pursue a project involving the ‘reskinning’ of a small private Taylor craft airplane in exchange for private flying lessons. This spurred his passion such that after graduating from Central High of Tulsa in 1953, he attended Oklahoma Agricultural & Mechanical College, now Oklahoma State University, where he earned an associate degree and aircraft mechanics license.
Ray worked Tulsair Beechcraft , American Airlines, McDonnell-Douglas before he became a part of the Eager Beaver Squadron of the 138th Tactical Unit of the Tulsa Air National Guard. He served ‘the Guard’ doing mechanic, flightline, and corrosion control through the years of the F86 fighter, the C97 and C124 cargo planes, finally the F100 fighter and the A7 fighter. During his time of service, he saw active duty and was part of cargo supply transport into Vietnam. Ray earned the highly esteemed Distinguished Marksman badge, while shooting with the Oklahoma National Guard high power rifle team. Earning gold and silver awards at Camp Perry National Match in Ohio. He was also awarded ‘Governors Top Ten’ among Oklahoma military shooters and served as sniper protection on President Nixon’s 1972 Tulsa visit and dedication of the Port of Catoosa. Probably his most cherished and memorable experience came on a practice bombing run in the A7 where he found himself at the controls doing a barrel roll at 500 knots! Ray retired from the Guard with 34 years of service in 1990.
In 1955, Ray met the love of his life, Mildred Reed (Millie), who was to become his WOW! to his dying breath. They were actively a part of the Sheridan Road Baptist Church youth group of Tulsa. They became engaged December of 1956 and married June 7, of 1958. This union was blessed with three children, David Ray, John Houston, and Rhonda Louene. Ray took his family to the country when he and Millie purchased a property in Keetonville. A ten minute hike from home put him and his canoe on the Verdigris River, where he loved to trotline for catfish. Fishing, hunting, spending time with family and friends were favorite pastimes of Ray. He and Millie were very active in the life of Hilldale Baptist Church where he enjoyed singing in the choir, teaching Sunday School and leading many R.A. boys. He loved softball, both slow and fast pitch, and enjoyed pitching for the men’s church softball league. He was also involved in short term mission trips to Colorado and Mexico.
Ray never met a stranger, and after an accident in 1993 that left him a paraplegic, he was in and out of many medical facilities in the Tulsa area. He delighted in ‘small world’ connections, and given five or ten minutes would know most of the life history of any new acquaintance.
The remarkable person in Ray’s story, his wife and best friend, Milllie, who has tirelessly prepared daily meals, brought whatever Ray needed, would record in her notebook at each doctor/hospital trip vital stats and prescribed medications, bathe and dress his wounds, be beside him to encourage him . . . . for 28 years. He has been greatly blessed and is forever grateful.
Ray was preceded in death by parents J.R. and Daisy Holman, sister Ruth Gilbert, and grandson Zephaniah Joseph Holman. He is survived by his loving wife of 63 years, Millie of the home, three children, son David and wife Leslie of Shawnee, Oklahoma, son John and wife Laura of Davis, Oklahoma, and daughter Rhonda and husband Creth of Bartlesville. Brother George Holman and wife Francis of Madison, Mississippi. Eighteen grandchildren, ten great grandchildren(with three more on the way). He greatly enjoyed many nieces and nephews and a host of friends. Additionally, his very special friend ‘Bo’ of the home.
Ray is eternally grateful for the love, support, and friendship of the Hilldale family and Keetonville community, particularly through these last 28 years.
The family of Raymond Holman has requested that in lieu of flowers, contributions be made to Hilldale Baptist/Baptist Medical and Mission International (BMDMI).

To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Raymond, please visit our floral store.


October 24, 2021

3:00 PM to 5:00 PM
Rice Funeral Service
631 E. Will Rogers Blvd.
Claremore, OK 74017

Celebration of Life
October 25, 2021

2:00 PM
Hilldale Baptist Church

Claremore, OK

October 25, 2021

3:00 PM
Woodlawn Cemetery
310 S. Nome
Claremore, OK 74017

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