Richard L. Holden, 90

FRYEBURG — Richard L. Holden, 90, of Fryeburg, passed away peacefully from this life on Saturday, Nov. 23, 2013.

He was born Jan. 8, 1923, in North Bridgton, the 10th child of Alpheus S. Holden and Iva Mae (Warren) Holden. He was raised at the family farm on “Holden Hill” in North Bridgton, and graduated from Bridgton Academy. As a teenager, he met the love of his life, Hazel Gurney, and thus began their life together, first as high school sweethearts and later as husband and wife.

During World War II, he was employed in the shipyard at South Portland.

After the war, he and his five brothers formed Holden Bros. Lumber Company, which operated in Sweden and North Bridgton until 1956. They then formed the automobile dealership, Holden Bros. Chevrolet, which operated in Fryeburg until the facility was destroyed by fire in the spring of 1968. In 1969, Holden Bros. Ford was established at the rebuilt location and continued into the early 1990s.

Also immediately following the war, the brothers acquired a stable of harness horses, and participated in the New England Harness racing circuit, with Richard acting as the principal driver for their stable during the 1940s, 1950s and early 1960s.

In 1962, Holden Bros. Insurance Agency was formed, with Richard as the principal agent. The initial office was located at Bridgton Avenue, Portland, and then was moved permanently to the rebuilt “Garage” facility on Portland Street in Fryeburg in 1970.

During the 1970s the brothers entered the business of real estate residential development with the creation of subdivisions in Fryeburg, Brownfield and Bridgton.

Richard had a lifelong passion for golf, having caddied as a youngster at Bridgton Highlands Country Club. He was an avid player throughout his life until age and health forced him to cease. His last participation was at the age of 89 in the “Holden Memorial Scramble” at Bridgton Highlands in June 2012.

He was predeceased by his five sisters, Alice May, Bertha, Mildred, Velma and Doris; and his five brothers, Ernest, Donald, Raymond, George and Verdell; as well as by his daughter-in-law, Patricia (Ross) Holden.

He is survived by his wife, Hazel G. Holden, his companion and partner in life, who for over 74 years selflessly provided him with love and care throughout, and particularly during his recent declining years. He is also survived by his four sons and their wives/companions, Gary R. Holden (Betty), Craig L Holden (Melissa), Dale A. Holden (Mary) and Terry W. Holden (Antoinette); his eight grandchildren; three great-grandchildren; and many nieces and nephews.

At his request, there will be no visiting hours or funeral service. There will be a graveside service at the convenience of the family.  Cards of condolences may be addressed to 652 Main Street, Fryeburg, ME 04037. Arrangements are made with Wood Funeral Home, Fryeburg, Maine. Online condolences may be expressed to the family at www.woodfuneralhome.org

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