Tireless volunteer for WNC vets is inspired by husband fighting for his life

Janice Holm's a member of a number of veteran support organizations because her husband David is a Navy veteran. He has Stage 4 bone cancer. (Photo credit: WLOS staff)

Janice Holm, our Person of the Week, might be the first to tell you what she does is not exceptional. Talk to everyone else and they’ll say, with all due respect, she’s wrong.

"There's an overwhelming support for this VA Medical Center," she insists. "I feel I do my part behind the scenes."

At the Charles George VA Medical Center, she documents every donation.

"Rhodendron Civitan Club of Asheville," she said at the desk where she does her vital volunteer data entry work. "Pocket calendars, that's the one thing. Reading materials."

"I get to see first hand the support that they're giving," she says. "And this is their way of showing that they appreciate all the freedoms they enjoy every day. "

Right now, she’s rallying sponsors to provide Christmas gift for vets. The cost is $30 per veteran. To help, go the VA web site and pay by credit card or check, making sure to note that you want the payment to help the Christmas effort.

Holm has a long history of supporting veterans. She's a member of the Veterans of Foreign Wars Auxiliary, American Legion Auxiliary, Disabled American Veterans Auxiliary and the Submarine Veterans of America Auxiliary.

In fact, the VFW Auxiliary appointed her National Ambassador Hospital Ambassador.

To understand her commitment to vets, it might help to know about Holm's hero.

"My husband, of course, for his submarine service," she said proudly at her Transylvania County home.

Navy veteran David Holm is her husband of 27 years.

"I love her as much as I do, because she smiles all the time," he said.

He smiles in the face of the unthinkable.

"My husband was in submarine service, and everything was covered in asbestos,” Holm said. “And, unfortunately, from that he has Stage 4 bone cancer."

"This life is all I've got, and I'm going to live it the best way I can," David says with determination.

"It's very upsetting when you have someone very close to you who through his military service is now fighting for his life." Janice said.

David understands Janice is a source of light to so many vets.

"Something that means that much to her and the reaction she gets from the veterans is unbelievable," he says.

Despite her husband's fight, she makes time to advocate for those who've served, which makes her exceptional in so many ways.

"What I see is the recipient, the veteran,” she says of every gift she takes note of. “And for me, that is the pleasure that I get."

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