Philip Holland, 40 of Niles, passed away unexpectedly on Tuesday, June 18, 2019.
Phil was born on February 10, 1979 in Neenah, Wisconsin to Michel Holland and Ramona Walsh.
Phil is preceded in death by his brother Christopher Holland.
On June 5, 2004 Phil married Stephanie Sain who survives.
Phil is survived by his loving wife Stephanie and the children they share; Jake (Kayla) Ferguson of Niles, Sarah Ferguson of Niles, Brad and Jake Holland both of Niles, grandchildren; Ellie and Judah Ferguson, his parents, Michel Holland of Indianapolis, his mother, Ramona Holland of St. Joseph, MI, a brother Stefan Holland of Niles, in-laws, Jerry and Nancy Sain of North Fort Myers, FL, and numerous extended family and friends.
Phil worked as a Program Specialist for the Social Security Administration. He was also a Reserve Police Officer in Buchanan. Phil had a deep love for music. He was an amazing “Grillmaster” who could cook just about anything on the grill. He loved grilling and craft beer. Phil will be missed by his dog, Boston.
To his family, Phil was not only a dedicated husband and father, he was role model to his and Stephanie’s children. He loved life and will be sorely missed by his family and friends.
Visitation for Phil will be on Thursday, June 20, 2019 from 5:00pm to 8:00pm at Halbritter Wickens Funeral Home 615 E. Main St. Niles. A funeral service will be held on Friday, June 21, 2019 at 11:00 am in the funeral home.
Online condolences, thoughts and shared stories may be made at www.halbritterwickens.com
In lieu of flowers, please make donations to Niles F.O.P Lodge 95, P.O. Box 1205, Niles, MI 49120
The following is a Facebook post from Phil that his family wanted to share.....
A note on what I am most thankful for always, and as I reflect on my family and friends.
Firstly, I am thankful for my amazingly compassionate, patient, and loving wife Stephanie Sain Holland, without whom I could never have survived many of the things that she chose to survive with me or the remints of those things that preceded her presence in my life. Stephanie, I love you more each day and I continue to be astounded by your ability to project strength into me where I would otherwise lack it. Your emotional aptitude, mental fortitude and simple honesty could easily serve as a model for God himself when creating other human beings.
Who could be next other than our four children, then?
Jake Ferguson, thank you for being an outside-the-box thinker who can find an upside to nearly any scenario where there apparently isn’t one until you identify it for us less adept. We have forged a very strong bond over the last several years, and particularly after your high school years when you became a man. We’ve often tried to define how our relationship works because it isn’t so much a “father/son” feel given your older age when we entered each other’s lives (and my younger age). But you recently hit the nail on the head by describing it as more like that of “brothers”. For reasons that are obvious only in my own mind, I subconsciously eliminated that mental comparison until you said it out loud; and it made sense immediately. My good relationship with you is immensely important to me, and I know that you feel the exact same way. Thank you for that. Thank you and Kayla Ferguson both for making (forcing?) me to be a grandpa to the sweetest little human being I’ve ever held this side of 35 years of age, my little Ellie-bean and now, Judah.
Sarah Ferguson, thank you for being a beacon of energy in the room when it’s desperately needed. Like your mother, you have a social makeup that is incredibly rare. You aim to please others because you are an empathetic, compassionate person who puts your own feelings and emotional needs behind those of another. As you know, sometimes that works out, and sometimes it doesn’t. But you will always keep trying, because perseverance defines who you are deep down inside. There is a clay sign hanging in my garage with a well-known quote by E.E. Cummings that reads: “It Takes Courage to Grow Up and Become Who You Really Are”. Your mother told me a year ago or so that you used to admire that sign while out in the garage smoking cigarettes with your friends and that you really liked the quote. As your mother will recall, I cried when she told me that story because it made me feel so good that I may have influenced you by complete accident! I liked a sign, so hung it up in my garage (after it sat on a shelf for years). You saw the sign, and it spoke to you at a time in your life when, as I’m sure you’ll agree, you needed it the most. Your growth into the smart, savvy young woman that you have become is impressive and it makes me very proud to be a part of our life.
Bradley Holland, thank you for being my first born son. The love of a father for their first born child is unique. I won’t try to explain it to you because well, I can’t, and you will only “get it” when you have your first child. Just know that when I look at you today, I see the plans, struggles, failures, sacrifices, successes, and worry all coming to the single conclusion that I had always hoped for since the day I cut your umbilical cord. You are smart, funny, compassionate, empathetic and, most importantly, your emotional intelligence is far above that of the average person. This latter trait is so incredibly rare as to potentially qualify you for a spot in the Guinness Book of World records! Your kindness and understanding of others, coupled by your mental toughness, will serve you very well in your pursuit of a career in law enforcement. I could not be prouder and more thankful of exactly who you are and the relationship we have today.
Jake Holland, thank you for being my youngest son. Like the love of a father’s first born child, it is totally unique. This is true not just for me but for you too because since you’re the last child I will ever have, you’re also the first child in the home to have to navigate your way with nobody underneath you in age. Your worldview doesn’t necessarily have to include being tethered to being an example for anyone else, which I believe, at least in part, supplies your fearless eagerness to see what’s out there in the world. You are a compassionate, creative and caring person who learns much more from experience than from what you read or are told by another. You are decidedly hands-on and are okay learning as you go. That takes as much strength and courage as it does caution; you are comfortable learning where that fine line lies all by yourself. We share a certain love and appreciation for music because we feel the same therapeutic effects of it deep within our souls. I am thankful for the special bond we will always have no matter what, as father and son.
Life wasn’t perfect, but it has been good and I knew enough to keep my boys in my care and custody no matter what else happened.
Reid and Shalico Sain Leaverton, thank you for letting me be “Uncle Phil!” to the coolest kids an uncle could ask for! I am also thankful for my relationship with both of you, as well as with Jerry and Nancy Sain, Jerry Sain Jr, Jennifer Sain, and Mary Smallwood. Thank you all for allowing me in your family with completely open arms and letting me fulfil whatever part in your lives I am privileged to fulfill. I am also thankful to Joanie Ferguson for her acceptance of me as a family presence in her life.
Gene Hall, thank you for being among the best friends a person can ask for. Meeting people of your caliber becomes harder and harder as we get older. By the time one is over 30 years old, it’s easy to settle on the notion that everybody you haven’t already become close with or weeded out from your life, must suck like the rest of the world. But not you man. You are a great man who lives by an honest code of integrity and honesty to every extent possible, and it is appreciated and recognized. My only regret is not meeting you sooner in life! You have also allowed me into your close circle of friends, which is comprised of a whole batch of exceptional people. For that too, I am thankful and grateful.
Niles F.O.P. Lodge 95
P.O. Box 1205, Niles MI 49120