2002 Regular Session

To: Rules

By: Senator(s) Walls, Simmons

Senate Resolution 35


     WHEREAS, Shelby, Mississippi, is mourning the untimely loss of Mayor Eric "Red" Holmes, who departed this earthly life on Monday, March 11, 2002; and

     WHEREAS, this young leader was energetic, intelligent, strong and aggressive, and few people could have accomplished what Mayor Holmes did in less than two terms of office; and

     WHEREAS, Eric began working to achieve his vision immediately after being elected for his first term; the young mayor was determined to improve the quality of life in Shelby for all citizens; and

     WHEREAS, he always felt that improving the future and protecting the youth in the community was the most important goal, and aggressively pursued grants for improving youth services.  He served as a high school football and basketball official, and started Little League softball for boys in Winstonville, Mississippi.  Mayor Holmes was not afraid to exchange his suit and tie for blue jeans and a tool belt to work on a youth project when necessary; and

     WHEREAS, Shelby municipal employees praised Mayor Holmes for obtaining membership in the Mississippi Retirement System and group health and life insurance benefits for all city employees during his first term; he acquired over $2 Million in grants for the city that funded everything from the construction of Shelby City Park to new city vehicles; and as a member of the Board of Directors of the Fannie Mae Foundation, he continued his efforts to make sure all citizens of Shelby could afford housing, a concern which resulted in his appointment to the Delta Summit Steering Committee by Governor Ronnie Musgrove; and

     WHEREAS, he was a 1983 graduate of John F. Kennedy High School in Mound Bayou, Mississippi, and received a full scholarship to Mississippi Valley State University, graduating with a degree in Political Science in 1986 after serving as Student Government Association President; and

     WHEREAS, he was the President of the Mississippi Conference of Black Mayors, one of the most influential political organizations in the state, and he was slated to serve on the National Conference of Black Mayors Board of Directors; and

     WHEREAS, in addition to his duties as Mayor, membership in various political and charitable organizations and service as Associate Minister and Deacon at Mount Moriah M.B. Church in Winstonville, Holmes was employed by the Mississippi Department of Corrections as a pre-release counselor at the Mississippi State Penitentiary in Parchman; and

     WHEREAS, he was preceded in death by his wife, Sheila Jones Holmes; he is survived by two children, Erica Holmes and Eric Johnson; his mother and stepfather, Maud and Larry Hemphill of Winstonville; father, Charles Bonds of Winstonville; and many friends, neighbors and supporters; and

     WHEREAS, he was a true servant to the community; his accomplishments are that of a lifelong leader, and it is with sadness that we note the passing of one of the finest leaders in the Delta who brought honor to his community and to the State of Mississippi:

     NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED BY THE SENATE OF THE STATE OF MISSISSIPPI, That we do hereby commend the life and public service of popular Mayor Eric "Red" Holmes of Shelby, Mississippi, and express the sympathy of the Legislature to his surviving family and friends on his passing.

     BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, That a copy of this resolution be presented to the surviving family of Mayor Holmes at the services at Shelby Broad Street High School, be forwarded to the Board of Aldermen of Shelby, Mississippi, and be made available to the Capitol Press Corps.