War hero, real estate giant, and community leader Paul Holder died Tuesday at River Park Hospital. He was 83.
Mr. Holder was a decorated war hero for serving his country during the Korean War where he received a Purple Heart after being captured as a prisoner of war.
When he returned home to Warren County, he began what would become a successful real estate career, getting his start with A.K. Parsley, who had an office in the Centertown area. He didn’t work with Parsley long before branching off and starting his own business.
“He grew to be the biggest real estate agent in Warren County,” said Centertown Mayor J.W. Underhill. “He’s known throughout Warren County. There aren’t too many people who don’t know Paul Holder. He’s done a lot of good things for people and done a lot of good things for Centertown.”
Mr. Holder served as a Centertown alderman for 20 years under the administration of longtime Mayor Author Lorance. He was a founding member of the Warren County Board of Realtors.
Mr. Holder located an office on Court Square in McMinnville around 50 years ago. His business has been at its current location on Main Street since the late 1980s.
“He was a legend in the auction business,” said McMinnville Mayor Jimmy Haley. “No one could compare to Paul Holder. He was very entertaining and he could get people to buy things they didn’t want and didn’t need. He set the standard.”
Earl Bailey got his start in the real estate business working for Mr. Holder.
“That’s been about 45 years ago,” said Bailey. “I’d work part-time on Saturdays to help him with auctions. He was a guy who could sure work the mike. You couldn’t beat him as an auctioneer. Warren County has lost a fine businessman. He’d do what he could to help you any time he could help you.”
Obituary information for Mr. Holder is available on page 2-A.