Ellamae Brown from Sweet, Idaho, first caught the eye of Gerald Ray Holes of Grangeville as she passed by under his Boise State dorm window. (He thought, “She is the prettiest girl that I’ve ever seen!”)
Their paths met later during the first snowfall of that winter during a huge game of “fox and geese.” Later, over steaming hot chocolate, they began their friendship and life.
Their 60-year marriage began Sept. 13, 1958, at Sacred Heart Catholic Church in Emmett, Idaho, before they departed for college at the University of Idaho. While they completed their bachelor’s degrees, daughter Jeri Mae was born. They graduated and each taught school in Mountain Home, Idaho, and their son Ray and daughter Carol joined the Holes family. After enjoying five years in Mountain Home, the family returned to Grangeville, where both Jerry and Ellamae taught school. Jerry also worked some at his parents’ Ray Holes Saddle Co., which they later purchased and enjoyed for 25 years. They, meanwhile, developed and ran Ray Holes Leather Care Co. for 20 years. (That business sold several years ago to granddaughter Sarah Rowley, and continues producing in Butte, Mont.)
Through the years, they have enjoyed their membership in numerous civic groups.
Jerry’s involvement includes Cub Scout den master, 4-H livestock leader, Idaho County fair board, North Idaho Small Business Development Center, Lions, Elks, Toastmasters and Chamber of Commerce. Ellamae is a 50-year founding member of the Central Idaho Art Association, Salmon River Art Guild, Soroptimist, P.E.O., Boy Scout den mother and 4-H art leader.
The Holes continue enjoying golf, travel, camping, art and spending special time with their nine grandchildren and six great-grandchildren. A small celebration marking their 60 years of marriage was held July 5 for big and tiny Holes family members.