Life Story / Obituary


John Elmer Holmes, 86, of Traverse City, MI, passed away on June 11, 2023. Born on March 2, 1937, in Oak Park, Illinois, John was a beloved father, grandfather, and friend.

John was known for his storytelling and sense of humor. He had a knack for spinning a great tale and could always make people laugh with his funny anecdotes. A true socialite, John loved any gathering and cherished the company of others. He had a deep affection for the Midwest, having lived in various cities including Oak Park, Arlington Heights, and Oakbrook Terrace, Illinois, as well as South Bend, Indiana, Milwaukee, Wisconsin, and Niles & Traverse City, Michigan.

John is survived by his daughters, Julia A. Eikey, Melissa A. (Brian) Johns, and Tricia A. Holmes, as well as his grandchildren, Jacob R. (Allyson) Eikey, Jessica A. (Isaiah) Daenzer, and Samuel J. Schultz. He was preceded in death by his father, Elmer W. Holmes, his mother, Grace L. Holmes, and his sister, Betty J. Holmes Siewert.

John attended Oak Park/River Forest High School and went on to earn a Bachelor of Science in Business from Bradley University. He was a member of the Sigma Phi Epsilon fraternity. John had a successful career as a business salesman for Airway products, Tyler Refrigeration and Desert Air. He utilized his expertise as a professional engineer in the Heating & Cooling/HVAC industry, selling and educating commercial businesses in products. John also served as a regional sales manager for Rheem/Ruud.

In his free time, John indulged in his passions for history, particularly World War I & II, and the auto industry ā€“ especially antique cars. He was an avid reader and a dedicated fan of the Chicago Bears and various college football teams.

To honor John's memory, contributions can be made to any local veteransā€™ non-profit charities.

John E. Holmes will be deeply missed by all who knew him. His humor, storytelling, and warm presence will be remembered fondly. May he rest in peace.

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