Lewis “Holland” St. John died on June 3, 2021, at Prestige Assisted Living in Richland, WA. He was born on October 14, 1929, in Okanogan, Washington to Lewis Holland and Edna Grace (Jones) St. John. His mother’s parents arrived in Washington Territory in 1888 and established a homestead eight miles north of Okanogan.
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Holland grew up in Okanogan and graduated from Okanogan High School in 1947. He was an active member of the Methodist Youth Fellowship, Scouting, and school activities. He was one of the first Okanogan Scouts to earn the Eagle Scout Award.
After graduating from Whitworth College, he spent two years in the Marine Corps during the Korean Conflict. He began his teaching career in the Richland Public Schools in 1953 and taught Language Arts classes for the next 32 years. He also served as a drama director, tennis coach, and publications advisor at Chief Joseph Junior High School.
Having never married, Holland found time for volunteer service to his community – including Scouting, directing Richland Light Opera Company productions, Meals on Wheels, Man to Man Prostate Cancer Support Group, and the city’s Parks and Recreation Commission where he served for 27 years, 12 as the chairman.
His passion throughout his life was tennis and was an avid player since his high school days. He played for Whitworth College, coached teams for the Richland schools, directed tennis clinics for the city, and supervised programs for seniors for many years after retirement. The Richland city council voted to name the new 1.5-million-dollar tennis facility built in Howard Amon Park in his honor in 2013.
Holland’s interest in genealogy led him, working with his brother Robert, to research the St. John and Jones branches of his family. This led to the publishing of two chronicles in 1997 which proved to be a most rewarding project for the two brothers.
He has traveled extensively throughout the US and many parts of the world. He especially enjoyed guided tours of Europe, Australia, China, the Holy Land, and Egypt. Annual trips during the fall to Puerto Vallarta, Mexico, and in the winter to Hawaii were always looked forward to.
He was an active member of Richland’s Central United Methodist Church where he served the Off Hours Ministry, usher, greeter, and attended the Bible Treasures study group for many years.
He was preceded in death by his parents and his brothers Winfield Scott St. John and Robert Eugene St. John. He is survived by his brother’s (Robert) wife, Jean, along with their three children: Christine, Constance, and Steven. They had adopted Holland as a member of their family, and he cherished the bond he had with them. He will also be missed by his long-time friends, his tennis buddies, and members of his Bible study group.
As requested, no memorial services will be held. Burial will take place at the Okanogan Valley Memorial Cemetery. Memorial gifts may be designated for the Blue Mountain Council Boy Scouts, 8478 Gage Blvd, Kennewick, WA 99336. Donations can be made at the link below.