Michael Terrence “Terry” Holland ’64

 Michael Terrence (Terry) Holland, former college basketball player, coach, athletic administrator, champion of student athletes, cerebral forward-thinking sportsman, and cherished “COACH” to so many, passed away in Charlottesville, VA on February 26, 2023 at the age of 80.

Terry was born in Clinton, NC on April 2, 1942 to the late Percy Benson and Alice Gray Holland. Throughout his life, his heart and passion guided him to multiple rewarding careers at Davidson College and the University of Virginia. His last professional venture took him back to Eastern North Carolina at East Carolina University.

A 1964 Davidson College graduate with a BS in Economics, Terry was a three-year starter on the basketball team, serving as Captain of the 1963-64 top ten Davidson team. As a senior, he led the nation in field goal percentage at .631. His Wildcat teammates remained lifelong friends.

Upon graduation, Holland served as Assistant Basketball Coach at Davidson under his Coach and mentor, Charles G. (Lefty) Driesell from 1964-1969. Holland then took over as Head Basketball Coach from 1969 to 1974. He was recognized as Southern Conference Coach of the Year in 1970, 1971 and 1972.

Gene Corrigan, then the Athletics Director at The University of Virginia, took a calculated chance on 31 year old Holland in 1974, hiring him as Head Basketball Coach. Holland was a fierce competitor and dedicated coach at UVA for 16 years. During his coaching tenure, he led the UVA basketball teams to early and unexpected success — winning the school’s first ACC Tournament Championship in 1976. Holland directed Virginia basketball to a national No. 1 ranking in the Top 25 polls numerous times in the 1980s and helped developed the nation’s number 1 recruit, Ralph Sampson, into becoming a three-time National Player of the Year as well as a lifelong friend.

In 1990, Holland retired from coaching at the age of 48 after amassing over 300 wins in 16 years, two Final Four appearances, a NIT Title, an ACC Tournament Championship, 3 ACC regular season titles, and two ACC Coach of the Year awards. Holland was quick to credit the countless players and coaches by his side for his personal achievements and to this day, refers to each of them as his family. Reticent to leave The University that he loved so much, one wonders if he always knew he would come back.

Often referred to as the Gentleman from Virginia, Holland was a North Carolinian who was eager to give back to his Alma Mater, Davidson College. As Athletic Director for the Wildcats from 1990 to 1995, his laser focus on elevating the athletic department for both men and women student athletes resulted in reentry into the Southern Conference, hosting the NCAA Men’s Soccer Championships for three consecutive years, and bringing back the Women’s Basketball program. Holland’s #42 jersey was retired at Davidson College in January of 2022, as he is their only former student athlete to serve as Coach as well as Director of Athletics.

In 1995, the University of Virginia warmly welcomed Holland back, this time to serve as Athletic Director. Under his leadership, several men’s and women’s teams played at the national championship level and the Athletic Department enjoyed its highest Sears Directors Cup rankings to date at that time. Aligning with his greatest passion, student athletes graduated at high rates. Fundraising for scholarships and facilities improvements prospered under Holland, including the expansion of Scott stadium to its present day form and the construction of the Aquatics and Fitness Center. During this time he also accomplished his passion to bring UVA a new basketball facility, John Paul Jones Arena.

In 2004, Holland returned to North Carolina, to serve as Athletic Director at East Carolina University. ECU held special meaning to Holland, and his wife, Ann, as both his mother and mother-in-law were graduates. As AD, Holland’s optimism and enthusiasm revitalized a proud Pirate program and resulted in enhanced facilities, postseason appearances for men’s and women’s teams and an enduring focus on the educational experience of student athletes. The Pirate Nation was always special to Holland.

In 2014, after 55 years of participating in NCAA athletics, Holland officially retired to focus on the passions that fueled him along his journey; his family and the “tug on the line” that he loved so much.

In addition to his collegiate coaching and AD roles, Holland served on the Senior National Team Committee of USA Basketball from 1992 through 1996, and chaired the organization’s Collegiate Committee. A member of the NCAA basketball Committee from 1991 to 1998, Holland served as its Chairman in 1997. He was also elected to the USA Basketball Executive Committee for the 2005-2008 term.

Holland was recognized and inducted into the Davidson College Athletics Sports Hall of Fame in 1996, the North Carolina Sports Hall of Fame in 2002, the Virginia Sports Hall of Fame in 2003, and the Greater Wilmington Sports Hall of Fame in 2010.

In 2019, Coach and his wife Ann returned to Charlottesville and the University of Virginia for the last time. The UVA Athletic Department and the Charlottesville community embraced them and cared for him during his final chapter, as if he had never left.

Holland is survived by his lifelong best friend since 8th grade and wife of 57 years, Ann Johnson Holland and their daughters Kate Holland Baynard (husband Steve) and Ann-Michael Holland; grandchildren Holland Baynard, Shark Baynard and Eliza-Grey Burnett; siblings Trent Holland (wife Kathy), Gregg Holland (wife Susan), Kirk Holland (wife Laura), Phil Holland (wife Carlyn) and Linda Holland Royal (husband Jamie).

There will be a memorial service at John Paul Jones Arena on Saturday, May 6, 2023 at 2:00 pm in Charlottesville, VA following a private family graveside service at the University of Virginia Cemetery.

Coach Holland’s bravery and willingness to share his Alzheimer’s diagnosis and journey was a testament to his passion for helping others. In his name, we strive to raise awareness and prevent further suffering from this disease.

Contributions to raise awareness and find a cure for Alzheimer’s can be made in Coach Holland’s name at the following address: http://act.alz.org/goto/CoachTHolland. Fond memories and expressions of sympathy may be shared at www.teaguefuneralhome.com for the Holland family.

Stephen Richard Bender ’64

Stephen Richard Bender of Elk Park, NC, passed away on December 18, 2022 at Appalachian Regional Medical Center. Steve was born on October 28, 1942 in Boston, Massachusetts to the late Dr. Charles Richard Bender and Ruth Jardine Bender.

Steve was raised in Atlanta, Georgia and graduated from Davidson College with a BS in Chemistry. He took additional classes at Georgia Tech and received a Master of Arts in teaching from Emory University. He taught in Oak Park, Illinois Public Schools before affiliating with The Presbyterian Mission Board as a teacher of missionary children in Ceres, Brazil. He returned to Oak Park after three years and retired from Oak Park Schools after thirty years.

Steve and his wife, Donna, moved to Banner Elk in 1995. Steve was a lifelong Presbyterian, having been raised at Peachtree Presbyterian Church in Atlanta, Georgia. He was very active in Banner Elk Presbyterian Church as an elder, adult Sunday School teacher and member of the Chancel Choir. Steve was a servant of God and loved helping in any way he could. He and Donna took courses in lay ministry through the Presbyterian Church.
He also served the community by volunteering with Habitat for Humanity, preparing income taxes through AARP and conducting numerous used book sales for the Avery County Public Library. Anytime a request for help was made, Steve was there.

Steve is survived by his wife of 40 years, Donna Gentile Bender, and four children – Amy Lynne Bender (Chris Johnstone), Charles Richard Bender, II (Mitze), Elizabeth Jardine Bender (Brad Tombleson), Stephen Richard Bender (Alison) and five grandchildren. Also surviving him are two sisters, Andrea Arquitt (Ed) and Karen Cooper (Joe).
Steve’s priorities were God, family, Church, Coca Cola and the NY Yankees.

A memorial service will be held on December 28 at 2:00 PM at Banner Elk Presbyterian Church with a reception to follow.
In lieu of flowers, the family asks for contributions to Banner Elk Presbyterian Church in Steve’s memory.

Peter Cassell ’64

Peter Ingve Cassell, 80, of South Down Shores, passed away on Sunday, November 20, 2022, at his home surrounded by family, after a 2-year battle with sarcoma. Peter was born on April 21, 1942, in New Rochelle, NY. He was the son of the late Carl and Lucile (Anderson) Cassell.

He moved to West Palm Beach, FL, at age 2. He met his future wife, Veronica (Connie) Morkert, in junior high school, and they married on August 25, 1962. They raised their family in Palm Beach Gardens, FL, moving to Andover, MA in July 1975, and to Laconia in November 1998.

Peter graduated from Davidson College in 1964 with a Bachelor’s Degree in English, where he was a brother of the Sigma Chi fraternity. He worked as a computer analyst and programmer during his working years. He proudly attained the rank of colonel in the US Army Reserves, retiring after 30 years of service. Over his lifetime, Peter volunteered for many groups and served on several committees. He worked with the Trauma Intervention Program in Andover, and after moving to Laconia, he volunteered with the Got Lunch Program, was a co-developer of the We Honor Veterans Program, and was a hospice volunteer with Granite VNA. He also held various positions on multiple committees in South Down Shores. Peter loved his community and wanted to give back as much as he could.

Peter loved boats, both sailboats and power boats. He and Connie made several sailing trips to the Virgin Islands with friends. He also enjoyed boating on Lake Winnipesaukee, and often enjoyed spending an afternoon moored in a small cove on the Lake, just relaxing. Peter also loved music and singing. From singing in church choirs to Barbershop choruses or quartets, he always had a song in his heart.

Peter was predeceased by his parents, Carl Ingve and Lucile (Anderson) Cassell, and his wife of 50 years, Veronica (Morkert) Cassell. He is survived by his daughter Melanie (Cassell) Prugh, her husband Duane Prugh, Jr., their children Ashley (Prugh) Rosa and Geoffrey Prugh of Methuen and North Andover, MA; daughter Tracy Cassell, of Stoughton, MA; sister Susan (Cassell) Everson, and her husband John, of Vonore, TN; brother-in-law Terrence Morkert, and his wife Stephanie, of Boca Raton, FL; and many nieces, nephews, great-nieces, and great-nephews.

Per Peter’s wishes, there will be no calling hours. A private family burial will be held at a later date at the New Hampshire State Veterans Cemetery, Boscawen, NH. A Celebration of Life gathering will be held, as well. In lieu of flowers, for those who wish, the family suggests memorial donations in Peter’s name be made to the New Hampshire Humane Society, NHHumane.org, or the Granite VNA, granitevna.org. Wilkinson-Beane-Simoneau-Paquette Funeral Home & Cremation Services and 603Cremations.com, 164 Pleasant Street, Laconia, NH, is assisting the family with arrangements. For more information and to view an online memorial, please visit www.wilkinsonbeane.com.

John Bruce Steigner ’64

Dr. John Bruce Steigner, MD, was born in Pennsylvania to John and Regina Steigner on October 31, 1942 and passed from this life in Houma, LA on November 13, 2022. 

Bruce graduated from Davidson College and the Medical University of South Carolina.  He practiced as an ophthalmologist in Houma.

He is survived by his wife, Sharon Honeycutt Steigner, his sons, John (Julie), Mike (Claire), Patrick (Sarah), and Jason, seven grandchildren Loraine, Oliver, Liam, Gwen, Sebastian, Ethan, and Caroline Steigner, two sisters, Barbara Bland and Sally Duckett. He is also survived by the mother of his sons, Milly Dampeer, stepsons, Bruce Ryland (Leigha) and Clint Ryland, and five step grandchildren.

A memorial service will be held in Houma, LA at Chauvin Funeral Home Friday, November 18, 2022 from 9:00 AM until service time at 11:00 AM. Chauvin Funeral Home is honored to serve the family of Dr. John Bruce Steigner.

To send condolences please visit www.chauvinfuneralhome.com.

Donald Coldwell Fuller Jr. ’64

Donald Coldwell Fuller Jr., known almost universally as “Dee,” died at his home on Nov. 7, 2022, of aggressive cancer. He was born on May 14, 1944, in Bellefonte, Pa., but moved to Milledgeville, Ga., in 1945 with his parents, the late Donald C. Fuller Sr., and the late Lena Frisbie Fuller, who were both educators — Dr. Fuller at what was then Georgia State College for Women, and Mrs. Fuller in the Baldwin County public schools.

Dee attended Peabody School at GSCW from nursery school through fifth grade. As a 3-year-old, he began a search for the “biggest number in the world,” the first manifestation of his lifelong fascination with numbers. After Peabody School came two years at City Elementary School and then Baldwin High School, where he excelled in academics and played the trombone in the Baldwin High School band. He was the District Star Student his senior year. Among the many happy memories of his childhood was the fun he had playing sandlot ball at Gilbert Park (now absorbed by Georgia College’s maintenance facility) with his neighborhood friends.

Graduating from high school in 1960, he matriculated at Davidson College, where he spent two-plus years before moving on to The University of Georgia from which he earned the BA and MA degrees in English and ultimately the MA degree in mathematics, completing all coursework for the PhD in that field.

From 1966-1969 Dee served in the U.S. Navy, teaching English to midshipmen at the U.S. Naval Academy in Annapolis, Md. After a stint at UGA’s graduate school, he joined the faculty at Gainesville College (now the University of North Georgia) in 1973 and was a professor of mathematics there until his retirement in 1999. After retiring, he and his wife Kathe returned to Milledgeville, his hometown (and her adopted hometown) and settled into the pleasures of the leisurely life. Except that he very much missed his interactions with students and the intellectual stimulation of helping them with academic challenges, especially in math and math related fields like physics. Almost immediately he signed on as a volunteer tutor at what is now known as The Learning Center at GC, and for 20 years he spent several days a week working with students, who fondly referred to him as “Mr. Dee” or “the old man in the Learning Center.” A gifted mathematician and lifelong learner, helping students overcome their fear of mathematics and realize its beauty and power gave him great joy.

A person of many interests, Dee read widely, loved music, especially of the baroque era, and was a great fan of all GC Bobcat sports teams. He loved cars and knew everything about them except how to fix them. He wrote with great facility and kept up a wide-ranging and lively email correspondence with his many friends. He had a quick wit and a keen sense of fun. One of his favorite pastimes was riding the backroads of Middle Georgia in his Prius V; he and Kathe spent most Sunday mornings happily exploring those roads while listening to the glorious music of Bach, Vivaldi, Mozart and other composers over a fine car audio system. He was a kind and deeply spiritual person who in later years belonged to no organized religious group.

He is survived by Katherine McLean Fuller, his wife of 52 years; his sister, Beckwith (Becky) Fuller Merryman (Emory) and his niece, Mary Lee Merryman, all of Elkton, Va.; his nephew, Emory Hughes Merryman, III (Xiao Yen), and his great nephews, Victor and Alexander Merryman, all of Arlington, VA.

His beloved and loving dogs Lola and Annie also survive and miss him.

In place of flowers as a memorial, it is suggested that those who wish, make a contribution to the Georgia College Learning Center, c/o the Georgia College Foundation, Campus Box 96, Milledgeville, Ga. 31061; the Animal Rescue Foundation (ARF), 711 S. Wilkinson St., Milledgeville, Ga. 31061, or their charity of choice. Another fitting way to remember Dee would be to listen to music that stirs one’s soul or to figure out a math puzzle.
The funeral will be private.
Moores Funeral Home & Crematory has charge of arrangements.