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Boone Native Son, Jim Holshouser, Dies PDF Print
Written by Steve Frank   
Monday, 17 June 2013 12:54

Notable native son Former Gov Jim Holshouser—the first Republican to be elected as North Carolina's chief executive in the 20th century, died today at age 78. Family said that Holshouser had been in failing health for some time, and he died at First Health of the Carolinas Medical Center in Pinehurst.

Monday would have been the 52nd wedding anniversary for him and his wife, Pat. Funeral arrangements—whether here or his adopted home of Pinehurst— have not been announced. A statement released by the family said, “We are grateful for the loving care of the staff at First Health and St. Joseph’s of the Pines and for the many friends and family who have so lovingly supported him and our family through the last several months. Most of all, we are grateful for his example of wisdom, integrity, love and servant leadership.” WRAL-TV said that Gov. Pat McCrory visited with the family Sunday afternoon, as  Holshouser served on McCrory's transition team after the November election.  The station published a timeline of Holshouser’s life, saying he grew up in Boone, the son of a prosecutor and a nurse. He got his first taste of politics as a teen, serving as senior class president at Appalachian High School. He graduated from Davidson College and earned a law degree at the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill, where he also was class president. Holshouser returned to Watauga County in 1960 after graduating from UNC to practice law with his father. Two years later, an interest in reforming the way state judges were nominated prompted him to run for a seat in the state House.

Undated family photo

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