Willie Edward Holland

August 19, 2023

Willie Edward Holland, known to all as “Sonny,” passed away August 16, 2023. He was born September 23, 1941 in Muscogee, Florida. As a youngster, he spent summers working with his uncle Jim in Orange Beach, AL. Uncle Jim owned Hudson Marina where Sonny developed his love for commercial fishing.

At 16 years of age, Sonny joined the United States Army and served for 4 years. He served one tour of duty in Viet Nam. After being out of the Army for a few months, Sonny joined the United States Air Force and served 3 more years for a total of 8 years in the service of our great country.

Sonny started Long Haul Trucking after his time in service. While working in the trucking business, he met his true love, Gloria Medley and they married in 1970. Sonny retired in 2011 from Seminole Express, and he and Gloria enjoyed retirement life for the last 12 years.

Sonny is preceded in death by his father, Richard Holland, and mother, Annie Mae Hardy Holland; his brother, Hubert Holland and his sister, Jean Holland; 2 grandchildren, Brian Grist and Stacy Grist.

He is survived by his loving wife of 53 years, Gloria; his daughter Anna Marie Grist; his grandson, Matthew Grist and one great granddaughter, Arwen Wood. He is also survived by his sister, Yvonne Hendrix (Bill); his aunts, Elsie Manning, Margie Kennedy, and Helen Allen; along with many nieces and nephews who loved him very much.

To know Sonny was to love him. He was an honest man who was loyal to his wife, his family, and his friends. He will be missed, but he is in Heaven, and we will be with him again.

Family visitation begins at 4 p.m. until 5 p.m. on Tuesday, August 22, 2023 at Faith Chapel Funeral Home North (1000 Hwy 29 South, Cantonment, Florida 32533). Memorial service will begin at 5 p.m. There will be no public viewing.

Sonny will be laid to rest at Barrancas National Cemetery at a time and date that has not been set.

In lieu of flowers, please donate to your church or favorite charity in his memory.


2 Responses to “Willie Edward Holland”

  1. J.R. Price-Williams on September 14th, 2023 8:56 pm

    Sorry to hear about Sonny’s passing,I met him in 1993 while I was driving for Jimmy Boone.God bless all of the family and friends,Sonny was a true gentleman and a great friend and will be missed by many.

  2. Teresa boyett on September 11th, 2023 10:16 am

    I just read this on North Escambia I am so sorry for y’all’s loss he was a great man I have loved your family forever

Have a comment on this story?

We welcome your comments on this story, but there are some rules to follow::

(1) Be Nice. No comments that slander another, no racism, no sexism, no personal attacks.

(2) No Harrassing Comments. If someone says something bad about you, don't respond. That's childish.

(3) No Libel. That's saying something is not true about someone. Don't do it.

(4) Keep it clean. Nothing vulgar, obscene or sexually related. No profanity or obvious substitutions. Period.

(5) NorthEscambia.com reserves the right to remove any comments that violate our rules or we think to be inappropriate. We are not responsible for what is posted. Comments may not appear right away until they are approved by a moderator.

(6) Limit your comments to the subject in this story only, and limit comments to 300 words or less. Do not post copyrighted material. Comments will not be added to stories that are over 30 days old.

(7) No posts may advertise a commercial business or political group, or link to another commercial web site or political site of any kind.