Marjorie Holmes dies at 91
One of Storm Lake's most famous natives has passed away.
Author Marjorie Holmes died recently at a nursing home in Manassas, Virginia, after suffering a series of strokes. She was 91.
Holmes was considered as America's favorite inspirational writer over 40 years, churning out over 25 books as well as a famed "Love and Laughter" column in the Washington Evening Star and regular items in Women's Day magazine.
The New York Times described her as "An American Phenomenon," and the Washington Post wrote of her as "A Housewife's Patron Saint."
Holmes is best known for her inspirational books, such as the best-seller "Two From Galilee," and "I've Got to Talk to Somebody, God," which is now in its 25th printing.
Among her other published books are "Have Pause My Heart," "Beauty and Your Own Backyard," "Nobody Else Will Listen," and "Hold Me Up a Little Longer Lord." Her book "Secret of the Christmas Tree" was one of her last published, in 1991, and lovingly tells of her holiday memories growing up in Storm Lake in the 1920s, and excerpts serve as the beloved "Christmas Story" featured in the Pilot-Tribune as a holiday tradition each year.
Storm Lake is prominently featured in many of the books, from the partly biographical "World by the Tail," to her novel for girls, "Saturday Night," and its sequel, "Love is a Hopscotch Thing."
In the city's centennial history, Holmes wrote, "Every tissue and fiber of my being is entwined with Storm Lake... How lucky to be born and raised in a beautiful place like Storm Lake. I can't imagine anything more stimulating to the creative impulse."
Later in life, she credited the teaching of a legendary Storm Lake schoolteacher and BVU professor Dewey Deal for helping to begin her career. On one of her school papers, Miss Deal had written, "You can write beautiful things for people who crave beautiful things. There is a duty!"
Through her career as an author, Holmes said she kept that paper, framed, hanging over her desk. "To my heart," she wrote, "Storm Lake will always be home."