District 3 Commissioner Tony Holmes dies at age 67

Published 4:30 pm Friday, February 17, 2023

Covington County Commissioner Tony Holmes passed away Wednesday, Feb. 15, after battling an illness. He was 67.

A lifelong resident of the Stanley Community, Holmes served the residents of District 3 on the county commission. He was elected to his first term in 2016 and was re-elected in 2020.

“Commissioner Holmes has been a friend for several years, even before he was elected to serve on the Commission,” said Commission Chairman Greg White. “I always found him to be thoughtful, mindful of what his constituents wanted or needed, and willing to vote his convictions on any issue. He was always willing to listen to all viewpoints on an issue.

Tony Holmes

“I was especially inspired by Tony’s handling of his illness the last few months – he shared a positive outlook with all who knew him.  And, he challenged all of us to be grateful for the blessings the Lord has provided. My prayers are that his wife Lynn and all of his family will be strengthened and comforted during the days ahead,” White added.

Covington County Administrator Karen Sowell was among those who worked closely with Holmes as part of the county government.

“It was a pleasure working with Tony,” Sowell said. “He was a great mentor, with a true servants heart. I will miss his wisdom and the laughter that he brought to all that was around him.”

Dist. 2 Commissioner Michael Smith said Holmes cared deeply about the people of Covington County, which was evident in his work on the commission.

“It has been a great pleasure to work with Commissioner Holmes the past couple years. Tony always had the best interest for the people and the businesses of Covington County. His absence will be missed by many people in the county and the surrounding areas. He was someone that you could depend on for guidance and was a great leader. My prayers go out to the Holmes family during this very difficult time. Covington County has lost a true asset in the loss of Tony,” Smith said.

Tommy McGaha, commissioner for Dist. 4, said he first met Holmes in 1982.

“Tony was definitely a character. He was the kind of person that when he talked, it would draw you to him to listen intently not to miss anything he said. He was comical and straightforward all at the same time. After that day I first met him, I don’t remember talking to or seeing Tony again until about eight years ago when I went by Holmes Pecans. It was almost like I had just seen and talked to him the day before even though it had been about 30 years. He was the same Tony.  You can’t say that about a lot of people but you can about Tony Holmes. That’s what made him so special to know as a friend and fellow commissioner,” McGaha said.

In addition to his work as a commissioner, Holmes was also the owner of Holmes Pecan which held a grand opening in the summer of 2022 to a new 10,000-square foot retail store in Andalusia. Holmes Pecan Company began nearly 80 years ago by Holmes’ grandfather, Sampson Holmes.

Holmes was born in August 1955 in Andalusia to Mr. and Mrs. James L. Holmes. He grew up working alongside his father in cattle farming as well as the family’s pecan business. He attended Florala High School and graduated with the Class of 1973.

Holmes continued working the family businesses throughout his life, doing so up until his death. He also served as a deputy sheriff and was an avid baseball fan, volunteering his time to coach city league teams from 1983 to 1996 and also umpired high school baseball for 17 years. He was a member of Red Oak Baptist Church.

He was married to the former Lynne Warren and together they had four children and five great-grandchildren.

Funeral services will be held Saturday, Feb. 18, at 2 p.m., from Foreman Funeral Home Chapel. Interment will be in the Andalusia Memorial Cemetery.

Holmes’ full obituary is on Page 6.