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Outgoing entrepreneur took risks, found success

| Monday, April 1, 2013, 12:01 a.m.
John J. 'Jack' Holloway, 86, of Mt. Lebanon, former owner and president of Holloway Supply, died Saturday, March 30, 2013.

An outgoing man who loved to golf, Jack Holloway saw a life-changing opportunity in 1964 and grabbed it.

“He put his house up for mortgage, started his own company and did great,” said Joan Jenkins of Knoxville, Tenn., his oldest daughter.

John J. Holloway, 86, of Mt. Lebanon, former owner and president of Holloway Supply Co. in the South Side, died on Saturday, March 30, 2013.

The Greensburg native worked long hours, but his personality made his window and door manufacturing company a success, Jenkins said.

“He never knew a stranger,” she said.

Richard B. Holloway of Fort Lauderdale, Fla., said his father sold material to homebuilders throughout Western Pennsylvania.

“He worked from the ground up and built it himself,” he said. “He was outgoing, and that was his forte — selling.”

Their mother, Roberta, worked long hours with him, and despite their commitment to building the company, they attended school functions and even coached teams as they raised six children.

Mr. Holloway graduated from Greensburg High School in 1944 and served in the Navy in World War II. Roberta Billings Holloway, his wife of 63 years, said he was stationed on a ship that was among the first to land at Nagasaki after the United States dropped an atomic bomb there.

Mr. Holloway and others in the group toured Nagasaki on a truck with only handkerchiefs across their faces for protection, she said.

“That was one of the things we could never understand, how they survived that thing,” she said. “That was one of his claims to fame.”

The couple met when Holloway was one of 55 veterans who were the first men allowed to attend Seton Hill University, which until then had been a Catholic women's college.

In high school, Mr. Holloway took golf lessons from Milfred J. “Deke” Palmer, father of famed pro Arnold Palmer, Richard Holloway said. Mr. Holloway remained an avid golfer throughout his life and made three holes-in-one, his son said.

Besides his wife, son and daughter, survivors include three other daughters, Leslie Stevens of Troutdale, Va., Jill Kiselica of North Lima, Ohio, and Kristen Fogarty of Los Angeles; another son, Thomas J. Holloway of Mt. Lebanon; a sister, Betty Wilson of Zephyrhills, Fla.; 14 grandchildren; and two great-grandchildren. He was preceded in death by a brother, Harold.

Visitation will be from 4 to 8 p.m. Monday in Laughlin Memorial Chapel, 222 Washington Road, Mt. Lebanon. Mass of Christian burial will be at 11 a.m. Tuesday in St. John Capistran Church, 1601 McMillan Road, Upper St. Clair, with entombment at Queen of Heaven Mausoleum.

The family asks that memorials be in the form of contributions to Alzheimer's Research, 1100 Liberty Ave., Suite 201, Pittsburgh, PA 15222 or to Hospice Compassus, 811 Washington Ave., Carnegie, PA 15106.

Brian Bowling is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-325-4301 or bbowling@tribweb.com.

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