Bobby "Bob" Eugene Holcomb

Tuesday, March 26, 1935 - Thursday, April 4, 2019

A Loved and Respected Gentleman

Photo of Bobby "Bob" Eugene Holcomb  - 1935-2019

As the morning sunlight fell across the mountains on Thursday, April 4, 2019, our community lost a man who has been an example of what each of us strive to be throughout our lives.  Bob E. Holcomb was a man devoted to his faith, a man who loved his family with all of his heart and soul and a man who taught so many the importance of always being the best that one could be.

Bobby “Bob” Eugene Holcomb was blessed with 84 years of a full and wonderful life. He was born March 26, 1935 in Yadkin County, North Carolina to the late Joseph Grady Holcomb and the late Texie Wilmoth Holcomb. His early years were filled with happy times of growing up working on his family’s tobacco farm with his brothers and where he became instilled with his strong work ethic that remained with him throughout his lifetime.  Bob was a gifted student, talented athlete and received a scholarship to continue his education and develop his athletic skills at Western Carolina College where he became an outstanding baseball and basketball player.  Upon his graduation, Bob made his home in Canton, North Carolina where he had been recruited to play fast pitch softball for the well known Champion YMCA  Team and was later honored as being selected as member of the Men’s All World Softball Team as a shortstop. Mr. Holcomb received many awards throughout his coaching career and was also inducted into the North Carolina Sports Hall of Fame for Men’s Fast-Pitch Softball. Education played an important role in Bob’s life and he began his dedication to becoming a lifetime educator at Canton High School and continuing at Pisgah High School where he was a teacher and guidance counselor for 35 dedicated years.   Mr. Holcomb was a role model and mentor to students who have never forgotten his presence in their lives and his encouragement of always doing their best.  His strong love for sports continued during his teaching career as he became the head coach of the Varsity Boys Basketball team at Canton High School and Pisgah High School. He was honored on three occasions as being selected as The Western North Carolina Coach of the Year by the Asheville–Citizen Times.  Bob’s lifetime of dedication to children and sports would remain and continue even following his retirement from the Haywood County School System as he became employed at Cherokee High School as vice principal and later becoming school principal. Bob also had the opportunity of coaching his granddaughter,Courtney when she played on AAU, Enka Middle School and Enka High School basketball teams and eventually became her assistant as she coached girls basketball at Enka Middle School. In his later years Mr. Holcomb was a small business entrepreneur developing a promotional and marketing consulting firm.  Bob was a man of strong faith and was a dedicated member of Canton Central United Methodist Church. He also served as a board member of Haywood Christian Ministry. Bobby “Bob” Eugene Holcomb was a man who truly loved his family, who inspired and changed the lives of many by believing in them and encouraging them and is an example for each of us to follow.  We give thanks for the life of Bob Holcomb.   

In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by his wife, Carolyn Roberts Holcomb who passed away in 2005.

Bob’s memory will continue to live in the hearts of his surviving family: his wife, Vicki Booker Holcomb of Canton; his daughters, Cynthia Sellinger (Howard) of Candler and Amy Trantham (Jeff) of Candler; a step-son, Michael Dineen of Vail, Colorado ; grandchildren, Courtney Dietiker (Nathan), Blake Trantham, Brennan Trantham, Rachel Nixon (Sean) and Hunter Sellinger(Kim); great –grandchildren, Mattie, Pierce, Emma, Alice, Lola and two more baby blessings on the way; brothers, Thad Holcomb ( Annette) of Yadkinville, NC and Hubert Holcomb ( Trilby) of Lawrenceville , GA.

The funeral service will be held at 3:00 pm Sunday, April 7, 2019 at Canton Central United Methodist Church. Pastor Paul Brown and Pastor Riley Covin will be officiating. A reception and gathering of friends and family to celebrate Bob’s life will be held in the church fellowship hall one hour prior to the funeral service. Entombment will be in The Horizon Mausoleum at Crawford / Ray Memorial Gardens in Clyde.

In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made in Bob’s memory to the Haywood County School Foundation, Pisgah High School, 1230 North Main Street, Waynesville or Haywood Christian Ministry, 150 Branner Avenue, Waynesville, NC 28786.

Crawford / Ray Funeral Home and Cremation Service is honored to be caring for the Holcomb family.             



Condolences from family and friends


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Our thoughts and prayers are with the family at this time.
Pisgah High Class of 1975
One of my favorite teachers from canton high he was always willing to listen Sandra Ramsey Anderson
Sandra Anderson
I have the fondest memories of mr./coach Holcomb’s and his wonderful family...thinking of you all and love from New York!
Cullen howell
Amy I’m so sorry. He was such a wonderful man. Everyone that knew him was a better person for knowing him. I remember him fondly from our SMK days and high school too. Always fair. Always kind. Love you!!!
Cara Mills
My thoughts and prayers are with the Holcomb family. "Coach" was an inspiration to many young men who played for him, and he will be forever missed.
Larry Goodwin
hrest in peaseewas a great teacer as well as hislate wife he was a good coach great softball player and a getleman my thoughts and prayers are with you
donald ramsey
My deepest sympathy to all of Bob's family. The Canton Fastpitch Softball family has lost one of it's N.C. Softball Hall of Fame members. It was my privilege to nominate him for this honor.
Juanita Dixon
Bob was a sincere and caring friend to us! We will always remember his humorous antics and his outgoing personality! Our thoughts and prayers are with all the family during this time of sadness.
Coach Jim and Sue Fox
He and your family have always been so very special to me. I loved seeing him at school always making me smile and take away any worries. My deepest condolences to your family at this difficult time.
Lisa Devlin Patten
Lee and I are so very sorry to learn of Bobby's passing. Never has their been a finer man. His dedication and love of Canton and particularly Pisgah High is immeasurable. I had the distinct honor and pleasure of working with Bobby for 5 years. Our thoughts are with Carolyn, Cynthia, and Amy.
Mal Brown
Bob Holcombe was a great coach and teacher. Sending our condolences to the family.
David and Alana Hamlett
So sorry to hear of Mr Holcomb’s passing. So many good memories of him at school and church growing up. Thoughts and prayers for Carolyn and girls.
Penny Coman Penland
Always had great admiration for Bobby as a softball player and as a person. Bobby was a great teammate in the Champion "Y" fastpitch family. Thanks to whoever posted his passing on Facebook.
Bobby Williamson
Amy, so sorry to hear about Coach. He loved teaching the game and I was one of the many beneficiaries of that teaching. I wouldn’t trade those years playing basketball for him for anything. He even taught me how to tie a tie so that I could look presentable for away games! Will be praying for you guys.
Kurtis Underwood
Cynthia, Amy and family: Our hearts break with yours at the loss of your dad, but we rejoice that he is home with our Savior, healthy and whole! You all are very special to us! Your dad is just a wonderful and precious man, and he will be so very missed! Much love to and prayers for you! Kim and Mary
Kim and Mary Milner
The Pisgah High School Class of 1978 would like to extends our deepest condolences to our classmate, Cynthia Holcomb Sellinger, on the passing of her father, Mr Bob Holcomb. Words cannot even begin to express our sorrow. May you take comfort in knowing another angel is watching over you now. You are in our prayers.
PHS Class of 1978
Words fall short of expressing my sorrow for your loss. In sorrow, we mourn those we've lost. In gratitude, we embrace those around us. In sympathy, we reach out to those who grieve. May the peace that comes from the memories of your love comfort you now and in the days ahead.
Cindy Dixon Owen
Amy, Cynthia, Courtney, Vicki...I am so sorry for your loss. What a great man whose influence will live on and on and on. So many fond memories of time spent with this family. Prayers for peace and comfort.
Heather Hollingsworth
Tommy Wilson
So sorry for your loss. Prayers for you and your family. May God’s love comfort you during this sorrowful time.
Phyllis McCollum
Prayers for all of Bob’s family. He was such an inspiration to me in high school and helped keep me on the right path. He genuinely cared about me and I will be forever grateful for all the life lessons he taught me. I always considered him the best coach ever! I am confident we will meet again in a much better place! See you later Coach!
Barry Clark
The Pisgah High School Class of 1980 would like to send our deepest sympathies to your family, "Coach" Holcombe, as he will always be known to us , was a great man. He was a honest and true to the heart Coach. No matter who you were he always treated you with respect. Our hearts are truly broke.
Pisgah High School Class of 1980
The Class of 76 sends its deepest condolences. May the Lord send you comfort and peace during your time of sorrow .
Class of 76
We are saddened by the sudden loss of such a wonderful man,we send our condolences and prayers of comfort to the family....
Randy and Tammy McDowell
There was no finer Teacher, Coach, Father or Man. He impacted many lives at Pisgah High School and in our community, including my own. My thoughts and prayers go out to entire Holcomb family. Respectfully & sincerely, Bill Stines Columbus, Ohio
Bill Stines
God's grace and peace be with all the family of Bob, especially Vickie, Cynthia and Amy.
Pam Ledford
My deepest condolences to Bob's family. I have many fond memories of the family from church and school. My husband, Mike, loved coach Bob.. He was a wonderful educator and a fine man.
Becky Stamey
Amy, my heart goes out to you and your family. So many fond memories of your dad and what a caring and giving man he was with a great sense of humor. Never complaining about a group of screaming teenage girls. Prayers and love my friend.
Laura Rollins
Great teacher, coach, and friend. I very much appreciate all he did for me. I’m praying for Cynthia and the rest of his family. He will be remembered for all the good works he did.
Robert Allen
Our prayers are with the family he was and still a great man, every morning when I walked in the front doors at Pisgah he was always greeting and saying good morning to everyone that walked in. If any of us had a issues with a class or subject he was there to help us. We all loved him very much. The class of 1991 will always be in his heart and soul we all miss you prayers are with you all.
Kevin L Paxton
My deepest sympathy to you Cynthia, Vicki, and all your family at this time. I remember Bob from Western Carolina where he played baseball with Dwight (Rabbitt) Sherrill. The world lost two fine baseball players. My thoughts and prayers are with you all at this sad time.
Dottie Sherrill
Our thoughts and prayers to all the family.
Jerry & Darlene Gregg
It has been a honor to know Mr. Bob all these years he was wonderful person to and a blessing to all of us Stacy Rathbone Patti boo designs
Stacy rathbone
So sorry to hear of Bob’s passing. I served on numerous state committees with him. He was always kind and gracious. I will always remember him for his selfless dedication to the youth of WNC. My thought and prayers will be with all of you now and in the difficult days ahead❤️ •Susan•
Susan DeWeese
I remember Bob from Pisgah HS as guidance counselor and a coach. When I played with Boots Randolph in 1987 Bob was in the audience. He congratulated me at school the next morning. In the early 90s I was doing a performance at Cherokee HS and Bob was there. We talked for a bit afterward, and he wished me luck in my music career. I'm sorry to hear about his passing. My condolences to Amy and all family members.
Karl Wingruber
I owe so much to Bob and his co-worker Mrs. Palmer. If not for him, I wouldn't be where I am today. You will be greatly missed my friend!!
Kathy Pope
You are in my heart and my thoughts and prayers. May God give you comfort during this most difficult time
Elaine McCollum
Vicki and Cynthia and family, my thoughts and sympathies are with you. I am thinking of you during this difficult time. Much love, Alice
Alice Hart
We are so sorry for your loss. You will be in our thoughts and prayers.
Fred & Joy Brown
Cynthia and Courtney, We are so sorry for your loss. You are in our prayers.
Janna and Barb
Bob was a true gentleman in every respect who had a positive influence on many students he coached, taught, mentored, or simply befriended over his many years in the education field. He deflected any praise from himself and always made one feel good about oneself. He was a man of high integrity who set high standards for himself which he expected from his student athletes. I was honored to have known him and I was most appreciative of his friendship over the years. My condolences to Vicki, Cynthia, Amy, and their families.
Richard Hurley
Our deepest condolences for the family. Fond memories remain from a life well lived.
Alan and Cynthia Burnette
Remembering Coach Holcomb at Canton HS as my Teacher and Coach, then later as Coach for our son (Chad) at Pisgah. He was a positive influence in our lives as well as many others in the Town of Canton. Our condolences to each of you.
Doug and Patty Buchanan
Sharing in your sorrow more than words can say. Please know how very much you are cared about and how deeply your loss is felt.
Kerry and Barbara Cogburn
Bob Holcombe was the reason I was able to go to WCU, get a teaching degree and spend the last 33 years doing something I Iove. His advice and support meant the world to me. He changed the lives of many PHS students. What a wonderful man!
Pamela Rogers Blomquist
To the Holcomb family, I am so sorry to hear about the passing of Bob, It was such a shock to find out today that he had passed. He was such an inspiration to so many people. You all are in my thoughts and prayers. Thank you Cynthia and Vicki for sharing such a wonderful man with the staff of Vance Elementary.
Norma Hawes
Condolences to all the family. Coach was always someone who made others better. He taught me to do all things with purpose and do so with all you have. He was a friend, mentor, leader and always my Coach. Love the man. Alan
Alan and Gaye Moore
Coach Holcomb had a tremendous influence on countless lives of high school students in western North Carolina. He was a life coach in his role of guidance counselor during my years at Pisgah High School. I appreciate his advice to always challenge ourselves to meet our full potential in all our endeavors. My condolences go out to his family.
Richard McCall
Mal and I send our deepest sympathy to the family . Bob was a wonderful man who touched our lives . I have many fond childhood memories of time spent with the Holcomb family.
Lee Brown
Amy so sorry to hear of your dads passing he was a true gentleman and always made it a point to say hello at any given time, he will be missed. If I can ever be of help let me know
Mark Pace