A rare and priceless diamond; her beauty was reflected in her many facets… wife, mother, daughter, sister, researcher, friend, mentor, servant leader, and child of God.
Margo L. Steele Holland was born on September 30, 1959 in Chicago, Illinois to the union of John T. and Gwendolyn Gordon Steele. Surrounded by the love of parents, grandparents, Almon and Georgia Gordon and great-aunt Laura Adams, and under the watchful eye of her big brother, John Roy, she blossomed. As a child, she attended and was baptized at Chicago’s historic Pilgrim Missionary Baptist Church, and was actively involved in the Baptist Training Union and Girl Scouts through her teen years.
A product of the Chicago Public School system, Margo followed in her big brother’s footsteps, graduating from Lindblom Technical High School, and matriculating at Tuskegee University. She earned a Baccalaureate Degree in Biology from Tuskegee University in 1981, her Doctorate in Veterinary Medicine from Tuskegee in 1985, and furthered her studies, earning a PhD in Veterinary Pathology from Michigan State University in 1994.
Margo’s natural inquisitiveness and analytical skills drove a career in veterinary medical research that led her to hold faculty positions at Michigan State University, Iowa State University, and the University of Tennessee at Knoxville, and most recently at the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) in Washington D.C.
As a student in Tuskegee University’s College of Veterinary Medicine, she met another veterinary student, and in 1984 she married her soulmate and best friend, Dr. Robert Holland. To that union, two daughters were born – Ashley Noelle and Morgan Simone Holland.
Margo’s enthusiasm for life and learning manifested itself in her community service and her love for travel. Even with her responsibilities at work and home, she found time to give back through involvement with several organizations. She was a member of the Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Incorporated, initiated at Tuskegee University, Gamma Kappa Chapter; The Links, Incorporated, Arlington Chapter; Jack and Jill of America, Incorporated, Alexandria-Mt. Vernon Chapter; The Roanoke Dinner Dance Club and the Tuskegee Alumni Association. Margo loved the sisterhood she developed with these organizations; and she delighted in expanding her network of friends, particularly as she traveled around the world.
The one facet of her life that out shown all the others was that of being Mom to Ashley and Simone. Her pride in her daughters was immeasurable, and her designation, by them, as the “Best Mom in the World” was unchallenged.
On Sunday, August 18, 2019, after valiantly battling cancer, Margo L. Steele Holland made her transition from life to eternity. She leaves behind to celebrate her life and legacy a devoted husband and partner, Robert; two daughters, Ashley Noelle Holland and Morgan Simone Holland; mother-in-law, Lois Holland; two brothers-in-law, Colonel (Retired) Roger A. Holland, and Reverend Wayne Robinson; and four sisters-in-law, Renee Robinson, Rhonda Holland, Crystal Holland and Sharon Steele; her beloved nieces and nephews; treasured extended family; friends and colleagues.
A rare and priceless diamond indeed; her beauty will forever live on in our hearts.