Who Is Maria Elena Holly? Wiki, Age, Height, Husband, Net Worth, Ethnicity

Maria Elena Holly

Maria Elena is a businesswoman from the United States who runs the Buddy-Holy Educational Foundation. She is best known as the wife and widow of rock star Buddy Holly. She remarried after her husband died and had three children. She still owns the rights to her husband’s image, trademark, name, and any other intellectual property. She once sued Peggy Sue Gerron after her autobiography was published. She is well-known for her no-nonsense approach to defending her husband’s music, image, and legacy from avaricious promoters and music labels.

Quick Facts

Celebrated Name: Maria Elena Holly
Real Name/Full Name: Maria Elena Santiago
Gender: Female
Age: 89 years old
Birth Date: 20th December 1932
Birth Place: San Juan, Puerto Rico
Nationality: Puerto Rican-American
Height: 1.58m
Weight: 68kgs
Sexual Orientation: Straight
Marital Status: Divorced
Husband/Spouse (Name): Buddy Holly (m. 1958, died 1959) Joe Diaz (m. 1963, divorced)
Children/Kids (Son and Daughter): Yes
Dating/Boyfriend (Name): N/A
Is Maria Elena Holly Lesbian? No
Profession: Businesswoman
Salary: N/A
Net Worth in 2022: $24 million

Maria Elena Holly Biography

Maria Elena Santiago was born in San Juan, Puerto Rico, on December 20, 1932. She later relocated to New York City and lived with her aunt Provi Garcia. Her mother died in 1935, and her father persuaded her to live with her aunt. She got her first job as a receptionist with music publisher Peermusic. This is where she met Buddy Holly, who would later become her loving husband, in 1957.

Buddy and his group were on their way to meet Santiago’s boss, Murray Deutch. Buddy asked her out the day before recording the single Early In The Morning. This was her first date, and she had to get permission from her aunt Garcia. Buddy proposed to her within five hours of their first date, so it was love at first sight for them.

Maria Elena Holly Age, Height, Weight

Maria Elena Holly was born on December 20, 1932, and is 89 years old as of 2022. Her height is 1.58m, and she weighs 68 kg.

Maria Elena Holly
Maria Elena Holly


After the death of her husband, Maria went underground for several years as all she wanted was to leave everything behind. After marrying her second husband, he persuaded her to honor Buddy’s memory by telling her story and protecting her late husband’s name.

She devoted her time to defending her husband’s work from piracy and exploitative record labels. Her duties include negotiating license agreements with those who wish to use Buddy’s music or image. Many people have accused her of being greedy, but all she wants is to enrich herself by using Buddy’s name.

Maria Elena Holly Achievements and Awards

Maria is purely a businesswoman whose sole purpose is to protect Buddy’s license and sign agreements with entities that want to use his image or music. Maria has not received an award nomination. She probably couldn’t be known without her husband’s fame because she had no public name without Buddy’s name.

Maria Elena Holly’s Net Worth in 2022

Since Buddy’s death, she has been in charge of all rights to his image, music, and other property. Buddy’s name grew after his death, with many labels eager to produce a number of his songs that he had yet to record. After winning the rights to everything Buddy owned, this became Maria’s work. As of July 2022, Maria Elena Holly’s net worth is around $24 million.

Maria did not attend his funeral after his wife died, and she has not visited his gravesite since his burial in 1959. She blamed herself and music for her husband’s death, and it took her years to listen to his music again. She claimed that was the only time she was not beside her husband and that if she had been there, she could have prevented Buddy from boarding that plane.

Maria Elena Holly Husband, Marriage

They married almost immediately after Buddy proposed to her because they matched in Lubbock, Texas, Buddy’s hometown. They lived in Lubbock before moving to New York after Buddy and The Crickets, his band, split up. Both worked together in Buddy’s music career, where Maria handled promotional duties before launching a publishing company. Maria’s first work as a producer was on the song Stay Close To Me.

Buddy and his two friends, The Big Bopper and Ritchie Valens, embarked on a musical tour in early 1959, but they never returned, and they all died in a plane crash on February 3, 1959. Maria found out about her husband’s death from television reports. She miscarried as a result of the shock of the news, though no one has ever confirmed she was pregnant at the time. Authorities later enacted legislation mandating that victims’ names be revealed only after their families have been notified.