Robert Flavious Holt
April 4, 1909 (A Birthday Tribute on April 4, 2000)

Robert F. Holt would have celebrated his 91st. Birthday today if he had not been called to heaven in 1979.  What
you read here is through the eyes of a son, BobLHolt.

Bob; called Bobbit in his early years was the son of Robert Plunkett (Pete)Holt; son of Edward "Eb"
Bailey and Margaret Hammersly Holt,  and Mabel Vane Maxwell, daughter of Dr. John Flavious Maxwell and Mary E.
Grady Maxwell.

Of course there are many un-fillable holes in the "life and times" of Bob Holt that can only now be filled by Aunt Lizzie
and Hugh Maxwell. (I do not know the education history, but it appears that maybe he attended his first school just
across Sutton’s Branch from the house that burned and then probably Pink Hill School, his continued education is a
complete mystery to me though there must have been some. Note from Hugh Maxwell; Bob apparently attended
College at NC State, length of time?)  I’m very comfortable in believing there would be vast differences in their
stories simple because, well, you know.  I do remember he, along with Hugh and Rommie recounting the times they
would, along with Uncle Durwood, go with Dr. Maxwell to deliver babies and do other "doctor" things.  That along with
the many stories about driving school buses were lots of fun to hear about, some not nearly a good as those
recounting the adventures of one Captain, Major? Maxwell that would fly B-24’s,  B-25’s or were they B-29’s over
the millpond dipping the wing at Uncle Durwood who was probably screaming at the top of his lungs something about
scaring the hell outta everything  around. Do I remember correctly that this same Air Force pilot was told that the
runway at Seymour Johnson AFB was much too short to land them new fangled bombers, at which point, he landed
it.  Little did I know that years later, I   would arrive at that same base in March of 1960 only to find the base almost
abandonded. SAC was TDY in Goose Bay Labrador, and TAC was TDY at Brookley AFB in Mobile Ala.  The runway
at that time wasn’t thick enough to land the B-52 D’s ( 486,000 pounds with a full load of JP4 fuel giving those Pratt
Whitney J-75’s all they could handle ) and was being replaced with a much thicker one ( about 7’ thick ).  Bob
worked at that same base in 1942 as either civilian aircraft mechanic or instructor transferring to Camp Davis at Holly
Ridge in late 1942 moving the family to Castle Hayne to remain throughout the war.  Now I’ve jumped bunches of
years that block out the many varied parts of his education and entrance into the job field which apparently include
working for the telephone  company and trying to sell insurance ( a note from Ram asked how the selling insurance
game was coming and indicated he was enclosing a "fiver" and would send more later).  Sometime before taking
Helen Mae Stokes as his wife on Dec. 26, 1935. In attendance were. "RED"; Oma Faye; Helen’s sister, M. B.
Brennon Holt and Clifton Wiggins; that name is not familiar to me. Bobbit must have began operating a gas station
on West Vernon Ave. in Kinston, there are several pictures in the family album (Clystia has it at the present time)
indicating that.  Then the move to New York must have occurred around 1937 or 1938. There are many pictures
from that era including those of Hugh Maxwell, Ram, M.B. Brennon Holt Buster Smith and others taken from what
appeared to be a bridge along with those from the gas station he operated. They lived in an attached apartment or
room behind the station.  Some of his favorite stories were about Bill, the  motorcycle cop and the Mafia hoods that
would arrive in the big black touring cars, You filled the cars with gas, checked the oil, washed the windshield and
said or asked nothing. There are many names and addresses in Mom’s book from that period that of course mean
nothing to one that had not arrived yet.  

Clystia Faye Holt would arrive in 1939, being born in Memorial Hospital in Kinston, NC, they returning to NY enjoying
the 1939 World’s Fair and remaining until the death of Mabel Holt in April of 1941, they remaining until after my
arrival June of 41. Afterwards deciding to remain at the  homeplace, my life began in that rural setting.   

We must have moved to the "Projects" in Goldsboro in late 1941 or early 1942 and then to Castle Hayne in late 42
or early 43 remaining there until early 1946 when we returned to Duplin County.

Our life in Castle Hayne was quite and happy, though very frugal.  Of course us kids didn’t know the difference.  
The gas and other rationing cards were in place creating hardships on the home-front, though nothing like what our
guys  were being subjected to overseas. The old Dodge daddy had was a dud and would dump you in a

There was a bottling plant beside our house.  They  bottled NuGrape and Orange Crush sodas and even though I
had a special friend that took his afternoon break under the tree in our backyard and shared one of those sodas
with me everyday,  I knew there was something missing. The house is still standing today although the bottling plant,
Mrs. Corbett’s Grocery and the gas station that were across the road have long since disappeared. Several times a
year I’ll have the opportunity to pass by and I can still see that old black gentleman walking out the side door with
that drink is his hand. I’d be waiting  under the tree for him.  It goes without saying that I missed candy and lots of
other things that just won’t available. Some candies were, Mrs. Corbett’s grocery  had lots of penny candy and
once a month, Mom would take us kids with her and we’d get to pick out one piece.  She’d take us other places too
like the PTA meetings at Wrightsboro School. My sister was in the first grade there and Momma wanted to
participate.  One particular night after the meeting was over, we all got in the car, a 38 or 39 Dodge, to go home. It
steadfastly refused to shift into gear. Won’t no automatic transmissions in those days, least none that us poor folks
knew about. Frantic, she got out and asked a gentleman close by for help, telephone Daddy? Who had telephones,
No, he won’t home watching TV, won’t no such thing, anyway the man told Momma that the linkage was stuck and
raising the hood resolved the problem in a moment. Linkage? You’re asking me?  At the point I have to know how to
open the hood, bonnet, whatever, it’s time for somebody else to have it, I need a new one.  In 1959, I told them folks
in the Air Force, I won’t no mechanic, so they sent me to mechanic school.   Daddy had left civil service in late 1945
and began keeping books for Walter Godwin  at the company office across the highway beside the gas station.  On
one occasion, he took us kids with him to get a haircut down on Market Street in Wilmington.  He left us in the car out
front and went in.  As you can guess, it didn’t take us long to get into trouble.  Blowing the horn was a bunch of fun
until it hung.  We were screaming  and crying when daddy came running out still wearing the barber’s cape.  He had
to raise the hood, another one of those hood things, and pull the wire off the horn to stop it.   The screaming and
crying got a little louder just after the horn stopped.  I must admit that he never laid a hand on any of us in anger.  
Most times, it was the tongue lashings before the controlled belt wackings that hurt the most. Momma would scream
at us like a wildcat and whip us with switches off the bushes from out front or the fly swatter promising us a good
proper whipping when Daddy got home.   If it turned out that’s what we needed, he’d march us off to the bedroom,
sit us down and give us a tongue lashing.  He never raised his voice but sure got the message across.  That plus we
knew what would follow.  Each time I’d promise myself that no way was I going to cry.  Tongue lashing over, we were
instructed to drop our pants and lay across the bed.  He’d remove that big wide leather belt and tell us that business
about it was going to hurt him more than us. Sure it would! Very calmly he’d begin, one, two, three whacks.  At that
point, I was gritting my teeth and losing the battle.  He knew, I knew, the whacks wouldn’t stop until there were tears.  
After another couple more whacks, I always give in, if tears were all he wanted, what the hell, I’d give em’ to em’.
Although I didn’t understand the significance at the time, I do vividly remember seeing the billowing black columns of
smoke rising from the burning ships off of Carolina Beach.  

Uncle Rommie to the rescue, it came in the form of a wonderful Pontiac that he left with us while he was overseas.  
Also left with us was the very beautiful Helen McClaren Holt, his wife referred to as the second Helen in the group of
three, referred to as:  Bob’s Helen, Ram’s Helen and Hugh’s Helen, all three were gorgeous ladies, but Momma’s
look different than other ladies and I was struck by Ram’s Helen’s beauty and that would remain with me throughout
my life, Having been told many, many times that when I found Del, she was picked as being the closest possible
candidate to Aunt Helen.  

In 1946 we moved back to Duplin County living in the Bill Gooding House; Hugh D. Maxwell, Jr. calls it the Judge Dick
house. Spending that first night at Uncle Durwood’s ( I got to sleep in Hugh’s room, the one with the coconut that
had a face painted on it, gave me another opportunity to be with the other lady in my life, Rose, we were close
friends and I relished each opportunity to be with her.
Before I put Bobbit in the bank I think it’s important to insert this bit of his history from 1943……..Lamb’s Skin or White
Leather Apron

He was initiated on Jan. 21, 1943, passed on Jan. 25, 1943 and raised to the sublime degree of Master Mason on
Jan. 26, 1943.  This may have been at the same time that Ram and Hugh were.  He was following in the footsteps of
Robert Plunkett Holt who served as Master of Pleasant Hill Lodge, 304 probably sometime in the early teens or 20’s,
I’m not sure.  Both Bob and Helen were very active in the Lodge at Pleasant Hill, he must have transferred there on
his arrival back in Duplin County,  Helen really enjoyed her involvement in the Eastern Star.  That was a period with
Dr. H. A. Edwards lived, ate and breathed the Eastern Star.

At that point, Bobbit, now Bob, began his career with First Citizens Bank. The first office, a temporary one, was
located in the building owned and occupied by Jones Chevrolet Co. The few times I got to visit there, Mr. Melvin
Jones, along with his salesmen, Mr. Davis and Mr. Perkins always seemed to be sitting around a big heater located
on the left as you walked in the front door.  

When the new building was ready, the bank moved across Broadway Street to it’s new home beside T. A. Turner
and Company.   Later Brewer Drug Company would locate on the other side leaving an empty lot owned by the
Turner’s that would eventually be filled in with an addition to T. A. Turner’s.

Having arrived in the new building, Bob hired Gaynelle Stanley, soon to become Mrs. Remus Teachey. She was the
daughter of Cora and Jessie Stanley who lived at the old homeplace during the years between 1942 and 1949, They
then relocated to the Bill Gooding house when Bob decided to renovate and  move back to the farm.  Edward Holt
did the renovation.

I do not know much about Dr. Watson or Bess other than having the privilege of seeing them on a few occasions.  I
remember him as a small framed frail man while Bess was much larger in statue and frame.  There was another note
from Dr. Watson, almost prophetic in nature saying that he hoped the good people around Pink Hill would not take
advantage of Bob’s good heart.

In late April or Early May of 1948, Bob and Helen returned to New York for the last time. It was to be something like a
delayed honeymoon BUT!….EXCERPT

During the trip something musta gone bad wrong because few months later, Momma began to swell.   How’s that
little ditty go?   Three months later, all was well,  six months later, she began to swell,  nine months later, out he
came,  Larry Maxwell Holt doing his thing.  Yeah, yeah, I know, that’s just a little different from the way I remember it
Some mistake, he has his Ph.D. and is a professor at Rollins College in Rockledge, Florida teaching something
about "Applied Computer Technology" or something like that.  Doc. ain’t doing bad, forth or fifth marriage,  who
knows anymore.  This last one was through the miracle of advertisement.  They met through an ad he placed in the
local paper and Amber set his fields on fire.  When we were down to watch him receive his doctorate, she told us that
after two weeks of waiting, she took him down in the bathroom and showed him the joys of life. She shared that with
everyone that was present at the party the night before commencement.  I think she’d been in the jar of "good stuff",
no, it didn’t have any cherries, just lots of beads, Mr. Luther had sent down.   Larry just walks around with a big
smile now.  A lot of water has gone under his bridge, like the time he trashed his 57 Chevy at Maxwell’s Mill.  He’d
been on a hot date with his childhood sweetheart, Annette, and was running late.  Momma always told us what time
to be home, usually 10:30 on week nights and midnight on weekends.  He’d topped the hill and started down the
other side, lost control  and rolled it several times.  Luckily he had nothing but scratches and bruises.  Looked a
whole lot worse than he was.  Being covered with blood makes you look that way.   He walked the last 1 mile home
and woke Daddy up standing at his bedside and turning the light on.  Scared hell outta Daddy.  Took a minute or two
to figure out who he was.  

Mr. W. H. Jones put Bob into his first new car; and 1949 maroon Ford.  We were living high on the hog then, having
moved to Pink Hill in late 1947, we were living in one of Jap Smith’s houses.  That was the coldest house I can ever
remember. It was a lot warmer being an adult though with lots of entertaining going on with the Turner’s, Johnny
Shepherd’s, Hugh Curtis Turner’s and others.  In late 1950 while the renovations were taking place, at trip to see
"Big Mamma", Helen’s mother in Kinston that  ended in an almost deadly, tragic accident just north of Bill Byrd’s
store on Hwy 11.  On impact, Larry’s forehead struck the round clock protruding out of the center of the dash
opening a large hole in his skull.  At that point, Mr. Melvin took advantage of  the fact that there was no clock in the
center or the dash on his brand new 51 Chevy’s and soon Bob was the proud owner of a shiny black one.  

Back on the farm,  things were much different than being in the big city of Pink Hill, it was so quiet.   The road in front
of the house was yet to be paved, but it wouldn’t be long.  Bob had decided that for the first time, the yard would
extend all the way to the road. That produced untold hours of standing out front, water hose in hand, watering the
sand. Of course we all know that in time he prevailed and had a beautiful yard.  The addition of the bathroom and
shallow well changed everything  there. Bob wanted a place to play too.  He closed in the shelter on the side of the
packhouse and that became the workshop, really a place to enjoy his trains.  There was track everywhere.  He had
become involved in scouting along the way and it also served as a meeting place plus a eating place too. There
were many cookouts for the cub and boy scouts, mostly hamburgers and hot dogs, but they were great.  Later Bob
would begin his first attempts at grilling steaks on the hibachi………EXCERPT

Daddy would invite friends out for steaks and he’d have sirloin for them.  On those
occasions, the kids ate first and it would be either hot dogs or hamburgers.  Watching him grill the steaks on a
hibachi, I won’t real sure I wanted any of that sirloin anyway.  It would get burned to a crisp.  He’d stand over the
grill with melted butter and a brush.  The flames at times looked 2 feet high.   High?   That’s what made the burnt
sirloin taste so good.  They were all high by the time the meal was served.   Watching them eat, sure made that
burnt to a crisp meat look delicious.   After the meal, the Ukulele  would come out and renditions of "Show me the
way to go home" and " Five foot two, Eyes are Blue"  would begin.  Of course us kids, the sober folks, would be in
bed well before the music stopped.   Some of em really sounded good.  Daddy, Momma and her sister, Aunt Faye,
harmonized "specially good."    As I remember, Aunt Faye’s husband Carol, was like me;  couldn’t carry a tune in a
bucket or any other way for that matter.  I remember in the second grade, Mrs. Worley had us in the auditorium at
Pink Hill School, it was all 12 grades back then,  practicing some song for an upcoming event.  I was singing my heart
out with David Batchelor and Elijah Heath, nudged me and  whispered something about sounding like a "dying calf in
a hail storm".  With fans like that, it won’t long before I just accepted the fact.
As time went by he built a nice outside cooker; referred to as a BBQ.  It worked much better because the coals were
much further from the meat.  Chicken was especially good as were the hamburgers.  Steak was reserved for the
guests which was fine with up kids cause we didn’t have a clue what steak was other than  the wonderful stuff called
" Country Style or Country Fried Steak….EXCERPT

When I was a child, steak meant one thing, Country Style Steak.   I was well into my
late teens before I knew there was anything else.  Momma would take a piece of round steak and beat it to death
with the edge of a saucer or plate,  she’d then cut it into serving portions, pat salt and black pepper into it and
dredge the pieces in flour.   She had a 14" cast iron pan  that was just right for the six of us.   A cup of hog lard was
poured in after the pan was hot and then the steak was gently placed in it.   after browning it on both sides, she’d
lower the temperature and finish cooking it, now folks, she WOULD finish cooking it until it was, done, done, done.  
Then she’d remove the pieces and pour off most of the grease adding water and  flour to make the gravy.  When it
was just right, she’d put the pieces of steak back in to warm.  It was all poured into a large serving bowl and put in
the middle of the table along with plenty of rice or mashed potatoes.   Sometimes for whatever reason, she’d just cut
the round steak into portions and not tenderize it.   Now folks, that was some tough stuff, but with the gravy, it was
good tough stuff and of course, sopping the gravy with homemade biscuits or store-bought  lite bread made up for
any toughness in the beef.


Those relaxing afternoons would become fewer and fewer for Bob, the bank business was all consuming.  Seemed
he’d get home just in time for supper, then to rush off to some meeting; Bank, Pink Business Men, Church, PTA,
Scouts or as Ron mentioned it his note yesterday, just as we’d sit down for the evening meal, there’d be a horn
blowing and Bob would spend the rest of the meal outside talking with someone about loans or whatever.  Momma
would always make a plate for him cause she knew  it would take a while.  Sure, there were many times that horn
would bring a country ham or fresh killed pork or collards or something nice too but it really wreaked havoc with our
family life.  Bob was just like clock work after supper, he’d finish a cigarette, sit in the recliner extending it to it’s
fullest position, purportedly to watch TV only to be snoring almost immediately and that sound  would always be
intermingled with sounds from below that would ultimately cause the evacuation of the living room. By 8:30 he’d
gone to bed and just like being on a timer, 9:30 he’d re-appear on his nightly trek to the kitchen, the fridge would
open, out would come the milk and rat cheese, that  would be followed by the opening of a tube of saltines and the
peanut butter jar.  Listening closely one would hear the lid being screwed back on the peanut butter jar, lid closing
on the Saltines, milk and cheese back in the fridge, and cigarette being lit followed by a trip down the hall to the
bathroom and then he’d disappear back into the bedroom.

As the dark days of his life approached, there’d be less and less time he would have to spend with us kids.
He was during the mid-fifties, a man with a mission, knowing what had to come, he was desperately trying to make
sure his family  would be protected.  Amid the many community activies, he set about buying the remaining interest
of the farm from Ram.  That didn’t set well at all with  Bob’s Helen.  She had visions of a little white house on a hill
with a white picket fence and that certainly won’t the homeplace.  There was a lot of behind the scene struggles
over that and it would all reach a head when Ram and family were invited down.  I’ve never seen Momma madder or
Daddy more determined.  Bob managed to overcome all obstacles although Momma wouldn’t speak to him again for
some time.  

Daddy played at farming a few years before yielding to the fact that he was much better at some other things. Being
out in the fields was a kind of release for him and as he approached the dark days of his life, those times were
desperately needed.  He actually seemed to be smiling as he labored with us and Jim Grady’s boys moving the
irrigation pipes from location to location during the dry periods while the tobacco was most susceptible to drought
conditions.  He enjoyed the challenge each year he tried tobacco but found the most joy with the livestock. He tried
breeding Yorkshire hogs several times but each time he’d get in the prices would take a nose dive and the only
person making money was Leroy Simmons up above Albertson at his feed mill. He enjoyed Flossie too. She was
some milk cow but he didn’t have to milk her (guess who had that chore?, Right)  Then there was her calf; Blackie,
that I took as a 4-H project and after the showing, he was bid off to a friend who slaughtered him and brought Daddy
some of the meat which all refused to touch until he took it out to the supermarket and had it repackaged.  
Someone on the outside would certainly notice how rapidly Bob was aging, but of course those of us that saw him
every day didn’t notice.  I graduated from high school and left for the Air Force in Sept. of 59.  That fall would deliver
a blow to all Folks in Pink Hill and make a direct hit on Bob, his family and friends.  As I understand it, while the bank
examiners were on their scheduled visit, he decided enough was enough and saw to it that they would note problems
with some of the accounts.  When they approached him with their finding, he told them he’d straighten it out after
lunch and left.  Now it was finally going to be out in the open and the charade could finally come to an end.  He
started driving in no particular direction thinking of ending it all.  As he drove he couldn’t take the easy way out but
couldn’t face Momma.  He drove to Wilmington to Walter Godwin’s and as I understand it, told Walter and Ruby the
whole story. I don’t believe Momma or the Bank was contacted until the next day when Walter returned to Pink Hill
and home with Bob. Papers were drawn up and he was charged with Misappropriation of Bank Funds, a federal
offense.  Trial was set for November and he was free on bail. Later, the judge would tell him from the bench that he
was woefully represented by his lawyer. Though it was proven beyond a shadow of a doubt that he took nothing,
only protected those friends Dr. Watson had tried to warn him of, (the infamous list of 34), He was convicted and
sentenced to 25 years in Federal Prison in Atlanta. Asking for time to set his affairs straight, he was to report to the
Federal Marshall’s office in Raleigh on Dec. 7, 1960.  I took him to Raleigh that day and saw the Iron doors slam
shut behind him as he entered the holding cell.  That would begin a long, long period of my life full of hatred for so
many people. If I could have only taken a cue from the one that was hurt so much and seen the forgiveness in his
heart, my adult life would have been so different.  That wasn’t to be, not with me and most of the family though  
Momma was faithful to the task of holding the family together taking a job almost immediately at W. H. Jones Co. in
the  clothing section and she visited Daddy on every opportunity.  Through the work and love of a lot of people,
Daddy was released from prison after only a year.  The person that returned home was almost unrecognizable.
Having dropped almost 50 pounds and 10 years, he was a picture of health and now looked more his age, 51. He
immediately started trying to put his life back together finding several offers of jobs in Pink Hill.  The flow of
well-wishers was unbelievable and never once did he try to crawl in a hole and hide and moreover, nobody, nobody  
could get him to say a cross word about anyone involved the whole matter. It was behind him and he wanted to get
on with his life.
As Bob tried several jobs, nothing seemed to be what he was looking for until he went to work for Southern
Appraisal. They did reappraisals of real property for tax purposes, something each county in NC does every 7 or 8
years.  He was off to Transylvania County in western NC.
As he approached the finish of that county he felt it was time to stop traveling and find something he could do
nearby.  Central Soya to the rescue, Broilers were moving into the eastern part of NC very rapidly finding some
farmers jumping at the opportunity to find a money crop to replace the Tobacco that was under ever increasing fire.  
Two houses were  built very quickly and Bob was in the Broiler business.  That first bunch was something.  15,000
day old chicks in each house  We all marveled and how cute they were running around the wood chip covered floor
chirping as they went.  Then reality  kicked in.  "Mr. Holt, you gotta pinch the heads off the biddies that are not going
to make it."  That was not Bob Holt’s thing, believe me.
Sept. 17, 1977; Helen Mae Stokes Holt went to join those of her family that preceded her in death.  At that very
moment, Daddy was ready to join her. She had been wife since Dec. 26th. 1935 ( almost 35 years and he wanted to
continue their journey together through eternity.   After cleaning up affairs at home, he would spend the next 2 years
living with Larry in Fla. or Del and I back home.  His breathing continuing to worsen each day, he finally conquered
cigarettes.  That along with the much cleaner air in Fla. would prolong his life here.  Finally just before his 70th.
birthday, he told Larry it was time to go home, he was going to die.
Though there were many tears of sorrow, many were of happiness because each of us knew that Helen Mae was
waiting for him in the Mansion Jesus has promised each of  us. Theirs would be sitting on a little hill, with a white
picket fence all around it.

Thank each of you for walking along this path of reflection. It has given me the opportunity to revisit many past
scenes that might otherwise have not surfaced.  As Ronnie (Ron) said in one of his thoughts during the past few
days of pictures, Robert F. Holt must have been a wonderful man, his (like mine) only regret was that we didn’t have
the opportunity to know him better.  

Note from Bess Watson about 1946;

Dear Bob,
Well, so now you are a banker! Congratulations! We are very proud of you and wish you all the luck there is.
Dr. says now you are getting up to where you should be. We are very happy for you and Helen.  What would Frankie
say if he knew you were now a High Finance Man!
Well, I do hope to see you once in awhile.  If I ever get a car, I plan to get up there oftener.
I think Doc is going to open an account with you - you know him - you are one of our boys.
Come to see us.
Best of everything to you all,

Pink Hill Man Receives Award..
J. S. (Jack) Howell, manager of the Kinston Office of Carolina Power and Light Company is shown above as he
presents R. F. Holt of Pink Hill a certificate of appreciation for Holt's leadership in Pink Hill's "Finer Carolina" contest.
EXCERPT; letter from Lizzie Holt Watlington; Robert Flavious Holt's sister, dated April 9, 2000
Thank You so much for the book about Your sweet Dad & Mother. He was so handsome & Helen so beautiful. I'll
never forget the day Bob took me to Kinston to meet Helen. I'm not sure but I think she was working in a ten-cent
store, in the candy dept. I thought she was so beautiful & looked just like Sylvia Sydney - a very popular movie star
at the time.
No girl ever had a sweeter brother than Bob. I must have been maybe 5 & Bob 7. We were living in what was called
the White House. ( the one that burned many years later). Sutton's Branch ran down behind the house in a pretty
wooded area & in the summer, Bob & I spent a lot of time on that creek, sitting on a tree that had fallen across the
creek. Lizards ran all around us as we fished for little minnow. We had two little hooks & Bob would cut poles for
them. A friend of Mama's had given us a little frying pan and we scaled those little things & fried them - we probably
ate them all ourselves.
When Bob started dating he would take me with him. I wasn't quite old enough to date but I guess he felt sorry for me
so he would take me along. He dated Effie Outlaw for a year or two & she would tell him to bring me along. They had
a self-player piano & I loved playing it. She also made delicious chocolate cakes. She really loved Bob!
November 19, 2011


Catherine Sheppard
Message flagged Friday, November 18, 2011 3:36 PMMessage body

Since I am not related to your famiy in any way, I have no familial prejudice. I merely wish to express an opinion that
was shared by many in the Pink Hill/Duplin community.

Robert Holt was a respected citizen. Yes, he broke the law and was punished. No doubt his family was punished
more than he was.  I remember the conversations among friends at that time. It was always such as this. "He was too
kind for his own good". "He never took a penny from the bank for his personal use". " He is a good man". One
indication of public opinion was the fact that when Helen could visit Robert in Atlanta one of his friends would drive
her there. Not many of us have the kind of friends that Robert had. His were loyal. Few people are left who knew
Robert. Certainly the others involved in this incident are now dead. Robert died an honorable man, others did not.
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