Mrs. Holloway, Jane, Lucy, Graham; other members of the Holloway family; distinguished guests; dear friends. On behalf of the more than 600,000 active and reserve Sailors and Navy civilians and the thousands more that have gone before us, we give thanks for your beloved husband… father… and dear friend – Jim Holloway.
It has been said that a nation reveals its character by those it honors… those it remembers. By remembering Jim Holloway, we aspire to capture something of his character...a bold and courageous warrior...but also a gentleman known for his graciousness and a love of learning. His memory gives us much to be thankful for… and much to live up to.
Like most Sailors, he spent much of his 36 years of service far from home. He saw action in Saipan, Tinian, Peleliu, and Leyte Gulf...over the skies of Korea...and in waters off Vietnam. He led Sailors from the gunnery station of a destroyer... from the cockpit of a Panther... and from the bridge of our first nuclear powered carrier. Whether facing battleships or flak... he remained the consummate naval officer - bold, decisive, and courageous. Throughout all these moments… and so many more… he championed the cause of our country. His sacrifice cost him dearly in friends lost and time away from his home. He made these choices willingly because of a love of country… what he would call one of the “noblest of virtues.”
As Chief of Naval Operations, Jim’s love of country found new expression through his advocacy for seapower and his commitment to the highest standards of material and personnel readiness. He reconstituted and reorganized our forces in a massive effort to confront the Soviet Navy. He understood that the fate of free nations lay in the balance... and that a ready Navy was the surest means of deterring war and, ultimately, prevailing against Soviet aggression.
His love for our Navy extended well beyond his time in uniform. He served as President and then Chairman of the Naval Historical Foundation for 28 years... a labor of love. He helped us understand the Navy’s contribution to winning the Cold War... a war that was won by, in his words, “Americans... patrolling a lonely frontier 10,000 miles from home and family.” His reflections contain much wisdom for us to read… and apply... today.
He gave so much of himself for us. But he could not have done this without Dabney – the love of his life – his partner for nearly eight decades! Ma’am...we can never thank you enough for all you have given to this country. Thank you for sharing so much of Jim and yourself with us all. We owe you a debt we can never repay.
To his family, please know how grateful we are to have known him and been inspired by him. We will never forget his lessons of courage, love of country, and service.
To the Sailors of this great Navy – remember Jim Holloway. Remember his fighting spirit and gracious servant’s heart. Honor his memory by being ready… so that Americans may enjoy the prosperity and security he helped to provide.
God Bless you Admiral. Thank you.
Admiral Michael M. Gilday
19 December 2019
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