Donald Holleder was born on August 3, 1934, in Buffalo, New York. He entered the U.S. Military Academy at West Point in 1952 and was commissioned a 2Lt of Infantry in the U.S. Army on June 1, 1956. After completing advanced infantry training and airborne school, Holleder served with 2nd Battalion of the 21st Infantry Regiment in Hawaii from June 1957 to June 1959. He then served a tour as an instructor at West Point from July 1959 to July 1962. From August 1962 to July 1963, Holleder was stationed at Fort Benning, Georgia, where he completed additional training, including graduating from Ranger School. He served with 1st Battalion of the 31st Infantry Regiment in South Korea from August 1963 to August 1964. Holleder next served as Aide de Camp to the Commanding General of U.S. Continental Army Command at Fort Monroe, Virginia, from August 1964 to July 1966. He attending Army Command and General Staff College at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas, from July 1966 to June 1967, and was then sent to Southeast Asia. Maj Holleder served with the 1st Infantry Division in the Republic of Vietnam and was killed in action on October 17, 1967. He is buried at Arlington National Cemetery.
His 1st (of 3) Bronze Star Medal Citation reads:
For distinguishing himself by outstanding meritorious service in connection with ground operations against a hostile force in the Republic of Vietnam during the period July 1967 to September 1967. Through his untiring efforts and professional ability, he consistently obtained outstanding results. He was quick to grasp the implications of new problems with which he was faced as a result of the ever changing situations inherent in a counterinsurgency operation and to find ways and means to solve those problems. The energetic application of his extensive knowledge has materially contributed to the efforts of the United States mission to the Republic of Vietnam to assist that country in ridding itself of the Communist threat to its freedom. His initiative, zeal, sound judgement and devotion to duty have been in the highest tradition of the United States Army and reflect great credit on him and on the military service.