Mary E Holekamp

May 20th, 1934 to January 12th, 2014
Mary Langs Holekamp, 79, of Port Huron, Mich., formerly of Webster Groves, Missouri, died peacefully at home on Sunday, Jan. 12, 2014.

A native of Michigan, born Mary Elizabeth Langs to John W. Langs and Elizabeth Stark Langs, of Grosse Pointe; Mary graduated from Grosse Pointe Country Day School and attended Sweet Briar College. She met her true love and lifelong companion Malcolm (Mack) when she was six weeks old on the shores of Lake Huron. Mary and Mack Holekamp raised their four children, Lee, Stark, Elizabeth, and Linda in Webster Groves, Missouri; they returned to Lake Huron each summer and moved to Michigan permanently in 1996.

Mrs. Holekamp was an avid reader, gardener, botanist and gourmet cook. She served as president of the Webster Groves Herb Society, the St. Louis Herb Society, the Midwest Boxwood Society, and was a board member of the American Boxwood Society. At the time of her retirement, she was the longest serving volunteer of the Missouri Botanical Garden. Many enjoyed her articulate and enthusiastic tours of the Japanese Garden, the English Garden, the Henry Shaw home and Herb Garden.

Mrs. Holekamp’s knowledge of gardening and herbs were the perfect complement for her passion of gourmet cooking, which she taught at John Burroughs School, in St. Louis, Missouri. She took great pride in her star pupil, Danny Meyer, who is now one of the world’s foremost restaurateurs. Mrs. Holekamp also served as a substitute teacher for French, Latin, and Spanish. Hundreds of children learned to swim with Mrs. Holekamp’s kind instruction, as a supervisor for lifeguards and swimming instructors at the Webster Groves swimming pool. Passionate about the value of education, Mrs. Holekamp worked tirelessly to have tax levies passed to keep schools strong and campaigned for council members, who would uphold the values of the community, including her husband, who served five terms as Webster Groves City Councilman. She also campaigned for candidates of her choice in local, state, and national elections. She was a committeewoman for Missouri’s Jefferson Township for many years.

Mrs. Holekamp had a love of life and generosity of spirit that made all, of those who knew her, feel comfortable, welcome, and well fed. Neighbors, friends, and family were recipients of her gifts; whether it was a smile of encouragement, Noble Fir holiday bough, a meal served in her home or brought to the door; she was always present in a time of need.

Mrs. Holekamp enjoyed travels with her family, reading aloud the details regarding places of historical, botanical, or cultural interest along the route, or singing humorous folk tunes through the less fascinating terrain. She shared her love of literature with her grandsons, who remember their dear Grandmary reading entire series of books aloud, with animated enthusiasm. When touring France with Mack and Stark, the native Frenchmen thought she was French, because she spoke French with the accent and fluency of a native.

On their small sailboat, Mr. and Mrs. Holekamp enjoyed making the journey from their home on Lake Huron to their son Stark’s home in Ft. Lauderdale via the Great Lakes, the Erie Canal, the Hudson River, the Atlantic, Chesapeake Bay and the Intracoastal Waterway.

Mrs. Holekamp is survived by her husband, Malcolm; children Lee, Stark, Elizabeth (Edgar Boyles) and Linda; grandsons Weston Boyles and Morgan Boyles; sister Patricia (James A. Fitzgerald); brother John W. Langs, Jr. (Claire); sister-in-law Carol Langs (Henry Elden), sister-in-law Jennie Burst, brother-in-law Edward Holekamp(Ann Tammany) and she was preceded in death by brothers Stark Langs and Edward Langs (Dotty) and by Anna Kubik. Aunt Mary to many nieces and nephews, she extended her mothering wings to the entire flock of her children’s friends.

In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made in Mrs. Holekamp’s name to either the Missouri Botanical Garden,, or to the Rios to Rivers Organization,

No Upcoming Events

Document Actions