One of Arizona’s Last Pearl Harbor Survivors Dies At 101

Jack Holder, an Arizona resident who was one of the last remaining Pearl Harbor survivor, has died at age 101.

Holder died Friday at the Chandler Regional Medical Center.

Holder was born in East Texas and joined the Navy in 1940 when he was 18. He was on duty at Ford Island in Oahu’s Pearl Harbor when Japanese aircraft bombed the U.S. naval base that fateful day of Dec. 7, 1941.

More than 2,000 members of the U.S. military, including more than 1,000 aboard the USS Arizona, were killed in the attack, launching the U.S. to enter World War II.

Holder survived the attack and ended up flying more than 100 missions during the war, including at the Battle of Midway. After the Pearl Harbor attack, he later fought in key Pacific battles that turned the tide of the war.

Jack was a true American hero, an incredible man, a patriot who faithfully served his country with distinction and honor.

A memorial posted on Facebook said, “Like so many other World War II survivors, Jack didn’t talk much about his service after the war, as he worked 25 years on corporate and commercial aircraft; during his days of flying he took time out to become a Pro-Golfer for three years. Jack is also known for forming Texco Oil Company, which he was the Board Chairman and President for four years. But that all changed when during his late eighties, he was invited to be part of an honor flight and visited the World War II Memorial in Washington D.C. The positive reception he and other World War II veterans receive triggered a desire to tell the stories of World War II. He became a regular at Pearl Harbor Commemorations, museums, schools and multiple other events around the country that I have been honored to accompany him on. It is his message that he continued to spread that inspired both young and old alike the meaning of courage and bravery.”

Holder went on to publish a memoir titled “Fear, Adrenaline, and Excitement” in 2016.

Holder will be laid to rest at Arlington National Cemetery at a date to be determined. A memorial service is being planned for Phoenix in early April.