Zachariah Holding

January 23, 1939 ~ May 2, 2021 (age 82)


On Sunday, May 2, 2021 at 2:30pm, you opened the gates and softly called him home.

Zachariah Holding, son of the late Sandford L. Holding and Jessie Pearl Mangum Holding was born on January 23, 1939 in Granville County, NC.  He was raised in Granville County and attended Granville County Schools.  Zachariah, lovingly known as “Zeke” to all who knew him, was a understanding family man, caring uncle, great friend, impassioned minister, concerned neighbor, and fair employer to many.  He was admired as a devoted husband and loving father who will be missed immensely by all.

Zeke met and married the love of his life, Wilma Earlene Shaw of Garland, NC.  Five children were born into this union, and raised in East Orange, NJ.  Zeke was a respected business owner and ran a successful landscaping business, Holding Landscaping, for forty years, employing many young men from his previous neighborhood in East Orange, NJ.  He was known as a strong man with gigantic hands!

His concern for his family and neighborhood earned him love and respect from all who knew him.  He was a counselor and second dad to many, but Zeke was no pushover.  He was a straight talker, who listened and spoke to adults and young adults in plain language.  If he saw you going down the wrong path, you can believe that he was going to have a conversation with you, and because he was inquiring, you knew that he sincerely cared about your wellbeing.  He was a man who enjoyed his family and his life and he was a hard worker.  He enjoyed a good laugh, he treated everyone the same, and he shared whatever he had with anyone in need.  We fondly remember the youth baseball team he started, the many young men whom he employed in his landscaping business, the back yard cookouts and homemade ice cream for kids in the neighborhood, and him playing basketball with his children and those from the neighborhood, who coined his signature move “the Holding Hook”.

Zeke turned his life over to Christ as a young man.  He loved the Lord and was a faithful servant of his savior, Jesus Christ.  As an ordained minister, he exemplified Christ in his talk and in his actions.  Zeke witnessed to everyone he met and was not ashamed of his personal relationship with God.  Anyone who met him will tell you that he put God first, and while he was sure to tell them to get themselves right with the Lord, he never looked down on them. 

Zeke lived life according to Matthew 28:19, going out into the community to make disciples.  In 1976, he was called into missionary work to encourage, strengthen, baptize, fellowship, and evangelize.  God impressed upon his heart that it was imperative for him to begin a tent ministry.  His ministry reached out to people in some of the roughest neighborhoods in Newark, NJ.  Through his work he touched many lives and brought many souls to Christ.  With Earlene by his side, he also began a nursing home ministry around this same time.  Each Sunday, Zeke and Earlene would go to a local nursing home and hold church for those who were sick and shut in.  The height of the ministry included a group of ministers, taking turns to ensure that church services were available to the residents of the Windsor Gardens Care & Rehabilitation Center each Sunday of the year.   Thirty-five years later, Zeke retired, entrusting his beloved nursing home ministry to his eldest son, ordained minister, Reginald Holding and his wife, Beth.

Zeke leaves to cherish and celebrate his life and legacy: his loving wife of 61 years, Wilma Earlene Holding; two daughters, Kimberly Juanita Holding, M.D. of Sunrise, FL; and Mrs. Yvette Shaw Holding-Ford (Troy) of North Plainfield, NJ; three sons, Reginald Trent (Beth) of Newark, NJ; Anthony Dixon (Elizabeth) of Palmerton, PA; and Jonathan Zachary (Nicole) of Willingboro, NJ; ten  grandchildren, Katisha T. Davis; Reginald Trent Holding, Jr (Sophia); Isaiah Trey Holding, Dalvin Jarvais Holding, Erikka Earlena Holding, Alanna Nicole Holding, Arielle Holding, Troi Taylor Ford, Jordan Zachary Holding, and Joshua Dixon Holding; and one great-grandson, TaHah Holding.  Three sisters, Norella McCall, Lorese Wilson, and Betty Bailey, all of Creedmoor, NC; two brothers, Rev. Charlie Holding of Raleigh, NC (Mildred); and Fred Holding of Creedmoor, NC (Joanne); He also leaves behind many loving nieces, nephews, in-laws, other relatives, and friends.

Zeke is predeceased by his two sisters, Catherine Pits of NJ and Fannie Bell Holding of Creedmoor, NC and three brothers, William of Creedmoor, NC; John of California; and Sanford of Raleigh, NC.

Zeke and Earlene retired to N.C. in 2008, where they enjoyed their small garden, and a slower pace of life.  On Sunday May 2, 2021, after an extended illness, the Lord called Zeke home to his final resting place at the age of 82.  “Well done, good and faithful servant; . . .”


Public Walkthrough: Friday, May 7, 2021 10:00 to 11:30 am at Butler & Son Funeral Home in Clinton, NC.

Graveside Service: Friday, May 7, 2021 at Arthur McKoy Cemetery on Shaw Road in Garland, NC at 12:00 pm. 

Graveside Service will be live-streamed through Butler & Son Funeral Home Facebook page at the time of service. 

Masks are required to attend public walkthrough and graveside service. 


Butler & Son Funeral Services

Clinton, NC

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