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“Peg: I just heard about your loss and wanted to reach out immediately with deepest sympathy. I am so sad that you have lost your soul mate which is...Read More »
1 of 22 | Posted by: Cynthia Marlborough - Duxbury, MA

“I went to school with Stephen, such a kind and gentle guy with wit and charisma. He was well loved. My condolences to all on the loss of this very...Read More »
2 of 22 | Posted by: Bonnie Sweet-Reilly - CT

“As a doctor you always review your upcoming patients for the day. Many times you see a name and you sigh or worse but whenever I saw Stephens name...Read More »
3 of 22 | Posted by: Jamie DeLugan - Norwell, MA

“Peg,So sad to hear of Steve's passing. I am grateful to have spent time with both of you in your home two summers ago. He was a wonderful, funny...Read More »
4 of 22 | Posted by: Janice Pfund - Charlottesville, VA

“My sincerest sympathy for such a tremendous loss Peg. After reading that beautiful tribute, I wish I could have met Steve. My thoughts and prayers...Read More »
5 of 22 | Posted by: Cathy Moore - Hanover, MA

“Dear Peg,Please accept my deepest sympathy in the loss of Stephen. You are in my thoughts and prayers at this sad time. ”
6 of 22 | Posted by: Jane Cavanaugh - Hanover, MA

“Dear Peg, I am very, very sorry to learn of Steve's passing. I think of you often. Please know that you and your family are in my thoughts and...Read More »
7 of 22 | Posted by: Sue Huer - Marshfield, MA

“Peg, What a beautiful tribute to Steve. My prayers are with you. ”
8 of 22 | Posted by: David Reilly - Mashpee, MA

“Peg,We are 6r6saddened to hear of Stephen's death and wish to express our sincere sympathies to you and your family. Our thoughts and prayers are...Read More »
9 of 22 | Posted by: Charleen and Bob Kasabian

“So sorry to hear of this. Condolences and prayers. ”
10 of 22 | Posted by: Theresa (Cavanaugh) Lojewski - FL

“Peg - I do not know how to express my heartfelt sorrow for you and your loved ones. Please accept my sincere condolences. ”
11 of 22 | Posted by: Maureen Caldwell - Holbrook, MA

“Dear Peg, what a beautiful tribute to your Steve. I'm so very sorry to hear of your loss. He was obviously so loved by you, his family, and by those...Read More »
12 of 22 | Posted by: Sue Noyes - Marshfield, MA

“Saddened and indeed, shocked to hear of Steve's passing. My thoughts and prayers to all his family and especially to Peg, who I call "my friend". ...Read More »
13 of 22 | Posted by: Fran De Lorenzo - Middleboro, MA

“So sorry for you loss, Peg. You are in my thought. Best, Paula Becker ”
14 of 22 | Posted by: Paula Becker - Cohasset, MA

“Words seem inadequate to express our sorrow for your loss. Praying for peace that passes all understanding and comfort in the love he wrapped your...Read More »
15 of 22 | Posted by: Nicole and John Chryssicas Boston

“We were so sad to hear that Steve had passed. I will always remember his humor and the twinkle in his eyes. So many good memories of him and his...Read More »
16 of 22 | Posted by: Marie Zimmerman - Malden, MA

“My thoughts and prayers are being sent to the Holda and Leyden families. I am grateful to have known Steve if only for a short while. God bless. ”
17 of 22 | Posted by: Jennifer Chittick - Branford, CT

“What an incredibly beautiful tribute of a person who clearly brought so much light and positivity into the world. Our family is praying for Peg and...Read More »
18 of 22 | Posted by: Kristin and Scott Regan - Hanover, MA

“Extending my sympathy to the family. May his soul Rest In Peace!!I woke with Kathy Blake. ”
19 of 22 | Posted by: Seray Cuthbertson - Brookline, MA

“A sad loss of a person of light, warmth, and amazing resilience. My heart goes out to Peg and the family who loved him so much. ”
20 of 22 | Posted by: Eileen Penney - Hanson, MA

“Deepest condolences going out to the family ”
21 of 22 | Posted by: Kathy Pezzola

“Prayers go out to you and your family at this time. ”
22 of 22 | Posted by: minerva calderon - south weymouth, MA

Heart Emblem

Stephen John Holda, 54, of South Easton, MA, died from complications related to rheumatoid arthritis on December 12, 2017, surrounded by loving family and friends, including his wife of 28 years, Margaret Mary (Peg) Leyden Holda, who cherished him.

Born on December 17, 1962, Stephen was the treasured son of Katherine Wheeler Lovett Holda and Felix John Holda, Jr., now of Stoddard, NH, and formerly of East Hampton, CT. He was the favorite brother of Katherine Holda Blake, of Lowell, MA, and Margaret Louise Holda, of East Hampton, CT. He was a second son to Thomas Patrick Leyden and Rita Ann (Nuss) Leyden of Westport, CT, and a beloved brother-in-law to Patricia Marie (Leyden) Paul and her husband, David Paul, of Upton, MA; Thomas Patrick Leyden Jr., and his wife, Nicole Pezzola (Pezzola) Leyden of Westwood, MA; and John Lawlor of Lowell. His nephew, Jacob Benjamin Dow, of Los Angeles, CA, and his nieces, Megan Elizabeth and Abigail Marie Paul, and Dahlia Anna and Olivia Rita Leyden, adored their Uncle Steve. He was kind-hearted and loving to animals, most especially Omar, Templeton, Zeb, Auggie, Buddy, and Sammy The Peanut.

The East Hampton, CT, native graduated from East Hampton High School in 1980, attended Manchester Community College, and earned a bachelor of arts degree in journalism from Ohio University in Athens in 1985. He spent his early career in advertising, working for Clarke Goward Fitts, Casey Media, and Holland Mark Martin. He later leveraged his quick wit and wry humor as a member of a Boston-based improvisational comedy troupe and as a stand-up comedian. Stephen also was a community theatre performer and occasionally worked as an extra in movies and commercials.

An avid golfer, Stephen played some of the world's leading courses, including Pebble Beach Golf Links, Ballybunion Golf Club; Harbour Town Golf Links; Merion Golf Club; Boca Raton Resort and Club; The Plantation Course at Kapalua; and The Country Club of Brookline. The weekend of the Masters Golf Tournament was annually spent in the company of lifelong friends Robert Rioux, Robert Rust and Sal DiMauro.

Stephen was a dedicated practitioner of Tai Chi, which he studied for more than 15 years under the guidance of the renowned Ramel Rones of Boston. Stephen credited his ability to successfully manage his chronic disease to Rami and the care he received from Robert A. Kalish, MD, and Jamie R. Delugan, OD.

Stephen's mother engendered in him an enduring love of reading. During his lifetime, he amassed a vast and diverse library – and became a self-made scholar of the Second World War. Stephen was highly knowledgeable about historical and current affairs. He disdained "truthiness" and backed-up his points of view with well-researched facts.

He spent years honing his culinary skills and regularly delighted others with home-cooked meals, including his signature meatballs, known as "Steveballs," and smoked ribs nicknamed "Stribs." He cultivated blueberry bushes and routinely grew bumper crops of heirloom tomatoes and pickling cucumbers.

Stephen loved sports and was a stalwart fan of the New York Giants and Boston Red Sox. He chartered a fantasy football league of which he was the trusted Commissioner for more than a decade.

Stephen was also passionate about music and enjoyed seeing emerging and established bands with friend and fellow Ohio University alumnus Scott Burns. He was a lifelong U2 fan and the "One" lyric – "We Get To Carry Each Other" – was his mantra and life practice. Stephen tackled challenges with a trademark positivity. He created opportunities for joy and laughter. He was a living, breathing wing-man, never comfortable in the spotlight but always eager to find a way to help solve problems, with an open-palmed shrug and a smile.

A Celebration of the Life of Stephen John Holda is scheduled for Saturday, January 6, 2018 from 3-7 p.m. at Blue Hill Country Club, 23 Pecunit Street, Canton, MA. Contributions in Stephen's name may be made to MercyCorps, the international humanitarian aid society, by visiting