Andrew “Andy” Holland passed away peacefully. He was 97 years old.
Andy was born to Norwegian immigrant parents on Vashon Island. He was orphaned at age 13, graduated from Vashon High School and earned a degree from the University of Washington’s education department with a major in botany and a minor in mathematics. He was a starting pitcher for the University of Washington’s baseball team.
Andy first taught school and coached at Tieton, near Yakima, WA. Summers, Andy worked as a lookout for the U.S. Forest Service. His adventures as a lookout are chronicled in his book, Switchbacks, published by the Mountaineers in 1980. In the book, he wrote, “I hope the guests of wilderness will continue to become the advocates for its survival, dedicated to preserving part of the earth in its original form so that humanity can always have access to the basic virtues and values of nature.”
Andy married Dolly (nee Helberg) in Aberdeen, WA in 1938. They made their first home in Everett where Andy was on the staff of Everett High School, teaching biology and coaching baseball. The Hollands loved spending time in nature and traveling. In his memoirs, Andy wrote, ” … my wife and I had the yen to travel.” They enjoyed seeing the world together and their motto was “Live until we die.”
Both of the Hollands joined the faculty of Everett Junior College (now Everett Community College). Andy taught mathematics, botany and forestry. Many of his forestry students became professional foresters.
Upon retiring from the College, the Hollands moved to their home on Mud Bay, Lopez Island. Lopez was the Hollands’ Eden and they enjoyed entertaining friends and family, golfing, the bounty of the beach, an abundant garden and orchard and volunteering in the community.
Andy is credited with helping start the Lopez Center for Community and the Arts. He and Dolly are honored annually with the island’s Community Spirit Award and the baseball field adjacent to Lopez High is named in memory of Andy Holland.
Andy spent his last years as a resident of Chandler’s Square in Anacortes and was subsequently cared for by the staff of HomePlace, Whidbey Island and Hospice of Skagit, Island and N. Snohomish Counties.
Dolly preceded Andy in death in 1993. A son, Gerald, “Jerry” Melvin Holland preceded Andy in death in 1999. Andy is survived by his nephew Chuck (Debra) Holland of Kingston, WA, cousin Ken (Linda) Rose of Lopez, WA, niece Marian (Don) Dawes of College Place, WA, niece Joan Pearson of Sun City, AZ and cousin Jean (Bob) Clark of Downey, CA.
In lieu of flowers, memorials can be made to the Everett Community College Foundation, 2000 Tower Street, Everett, WA 98201-1390 or the Lopez Center for Community and the Arts, 204 Village Rd, Lopez, WA 98261.
A celebration of Andy’s life will be held on Saturday, March 29 at 1:00 p.m. at the Lopez Community Center, 204 Village Road, Lopez Island.