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Respected Winthrop Student Veteran Passes Away

Quick Facts

 Cpl. Ryan Holdaway transferred to Winthrop's College of Business Administration.
 He was a respected member of the veterans community.

ROCK HILL, SOUTH CAROLINA — Respected Winthrop University student Cpl. Ryan Holdaway, a veteran of the U.S. Marine Corps, passed away on Sunday, April 23. He was 29.

Vice President for Student Life Frank Ardaiolo said many in the university’s veterans community knew and respected Holdaway.

“He was often characterized as a gentle giant as he walked across campus…accompanied by his Great Dane, Bolder,” Ardaiolo wrote in a campus-wide email.

Holdaway served his country in the Marine Corps Special Operations Command (MARSOC), including time overseas. During that time, he also played semi-pro football for the Jacksonville Bulldogs. His family noted that family, football and the Marine Corps were the most important things in his life.

He transferred to Winthrop’s College of Business Administration, but had taken this semester off.

A celebration for Holdaway’s life will be Thursday, April 27, at 6 p.m. at Jeanette’s Pier in the Outer Banks, North Carolina. Memorial donations in his memory may be made to UCLA’s Operation Mend.

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