The Joplin Globe, Joplin, MO


August 18, 2013

Gene Phillips

JOPLIN, Mo. — Francis Eugene "Gene" Phillips, age 89, passed away at Mercy Hospital, Joplin, Mo., on Aug.  16, 2013, at 8 p.m.

Gene was born Nov. 28, 1923, in Hazel Green, Ky., to Mount Vernon and Roxie Lee Hollon Phillips. He attended Plainville High School in Plainville, Ohio and graduated from the University of Cincinnati with a degree in history in 1950.

During World War II, he voluntarily enlisted to serve his country and joined the 53rd Coast Artillery Regiment in the U.S. Army. He was stationed on the East coast to guard against enemy submarines. He was later transferred to the 779th Field Artillery Battalion and sent to the Pacific Island of Luzon for eight months before the war ended.

Gene worked for Sears and Roebuck and had retired in 1985, with 36 years of service. He was the director and vice president of the Joplin Area Chamber of Commerce in 1973 to 1975.  He was a member of the board for Twin Hills Golf and Country Club for four years and president from 1977 to 1981. He also served on the Loma Linda Golf and Country Club board; was a member of the Joplin Rotary Club; Elks Lodge #501; president of the Joplin United Fund in 1975; member of the Missouri American Legion and served as past commander of the American Legion in Mariemont, Ohio.

He enjoyed traveling, meeting new people and talking to them about his family and grandchildren of whom he was extremely proud.

Survivors include his wife, of 67 years, Edna Jean (Jeanie) Hinnant Phillips; children, Linda (Gale) Yarrow, Montgomery, Texas, Mary (Tom) Shrum, Huntsville, Ark., Janet Shambro (Gary), Granite City, Ill., Peggy (Craig) Noble, Rogers, Ark., Sandra (Gary) Cooper, Thompsonville, Ill., Brian (Lauren) Phillips, Tuxedo, N.Y.;  11 grandchildren; and seven great grandchildren. Gene was preceded in death by his parents; two brothers, Clyde Thomas and Vernon, Jr.; and one grandson, Jamie Yarrow.

Services will be held Tuesday at 11 a.m. at the First United Methodist Church, where he was a longtime member. A private family interment will follow at Osborne Memorial Cemetery.  The family will receive friends from 6 to 7:30 p.m. Monday at Parker Mortuary Chapel.

Memorial contributions may be made to the Ronald McDonald House Charities of the Four States, 3402 S. Jackson Ave, Joplin, Mo. 64804; or to the First United Methodist Church of Joplin.

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