Tuesday, June 16, 2015

Bob and Bill Trip

As most of you know, Bill Phillip and Bob Phillip went on a road trip from Hermosa SD to Des Moines IA and back with many stops in between, including a wedding and a memorial service for Leo Phillip.  Enjoy Bill's quotes and the many pictures he took showing us all a little more about the Phillip/Vifquain history

Here are the quotes from Bill...posted on facebook (the dates and times are when they were posted on facebook).  You should be able to double click on any picture to zoom in.

May 26, 9:53 pm
All packed and ready to leave right after work tomorrow. That will save a half hour drive home and another half hour back. Plan to drive to Bozeman, Montana and then get an early start Thursday to make it to Hermosa, SD so we can drive part way to Des Moines, Iowa. Maybe to Sioux Falls, SD and then have a short drive Friday. I was going to make the whole drive Friday but my uncle Bob called me this morning and thought we should drive part way Thursday because at his age (93) he likes (and needs) to stop a lot.

May 27, 10:31 am
Made it to Bozeman, Montana. About a 7 or 8 hour drive to my uncle's place. Then we'll see how much farther east we can drive tomorrow. That will make Friday an easy drive into Des Moines, Iowa. Good weather and only 8 miles of road construction so far. Of course that was up the mountain to Lookout pass (Idaho / Montana border) behind a long convoy of slow moving semi's.

May 28, 8:22 am
Having a good time with uncle Bob. We were going to stop in Sioux Falls, SD. but decided to keep going. Got to Sioux City Iowa and kept going. We're in Onawa, Iowa, about 2 1/2 hours from Des Moines so it will be a short drive tomorrow.  *Bill and Bob are headed to Jim Phillip's son's wedding (Nick) on May 30th in West Des Moines IA*
Heard some good stories and found out Bob and his brother Leo were both at Iwo JIma and Okinawa at the same time but didn't know it. They didn't find out until after the war was over. 

I also heard more about the kamikaze that hit his ship off Okinawa and almost sunk it. *The USS Hinsdale*

June 1, 5:51 am
Having a good time, still hearing stories from uncle Bob. My nephew asked him which one of the four boys, (Ken, Jean, Bob, and Leo) was the trouble maker. I thought this would be interesting. His immediate reply was Jean. He said he was always getting blamed for things Jean did. A picture my grandma took popped into my mind. They lived on a farm and judging from the picture it would have been in about 1924 or 1925. Jean and Bob were given the task of irrigating some trees. Bob would have been about 3 or 4 and Jean would have been about 7 or 8. They were using a kids wagon to carry the water and Jean was pulling and Bob was pushing for everything he was worth. Jean would give a little tug on the handle of the wagon causing water to splash out on Bob and he would get soaking wet, never realizing what Jean was doing. Grandma took lots of good pictures.

Of course Jean may have inherited that trait from Grandma. She made pancakes for breakfast for Bob and Leo one morning and they were complaining that they were too tough to cut even with a knife. Grandma had put some batter down, then a piece of cloth, then covered that with batter. It was April Fools day.

June 1, 2:08 pm
We made it to Lincoln, Nebraska today. Found the Nebraska History Museum but it is closed for renovation until next year. We wanted to look at some of General Vifquain's possessions, his sword, spurs, and whatever else they had. He's my GG grandfather, Bob's G grandfather. Won the Medal of Honor during the civil war. Before going any farther I should point out he fought for the north before Susanne says "bless his heart". He did actually win it, not by re-enlisting but by standing up just out of rifle range and letting them shoot at a Yankee Colonel and then charging forward before they could reload at the battle of Vicksburg.

Since the museum was closed Bob asked if I wanted to see the cemetery where the General is buried. He hadn't been there in over 40 years but did a pretty good job of almost remembering where the grave was. We went to the office and when I said we were looking for Victor Vifquain's grave they said "oh, the General". That was nice.

To put things in perspective, Bob said his Mom thought the General was an arrogant ol cuss....

Other pictures Bill took:
This was in front of the Vifquain gravestone above.

This is the back of the Vifguain gravestone above.
 This is at the base of the Vifquain gravestone (picture with Bob).  Notice the flowers scattered around.  Increase the size of the picture and look at the center plaque on the ground....Post G.A.R. 214  There seems to be a descrepancy when I looked up what this plaque meant at this site.  When you go to this site and search for Vifquain, you will find the plaque should have been 234 ???
This is beside the Vifquain gravestone (picture with Bob)

June 2, 3:08 pm
Had a good time and a steak dinner with cousins Steve and Dean and Dean's wife, Becky, in Lincoln last night. We found out that after grandma and grandpa lost the farm near Springview, Nebraska in 1934 and moved to Alliance that Bob and younger brother Leo immediately got in trouble with the truant officer. Bob had just graduated from the 8th grade in Springview and school was out there for the summer but still going on in Alliance. Bob and Leo were running around town having a good time and grandma's explanation that they had finished their grades in Springview wasn't good enough. So they ended up back in school.

June 2, 3:24 pm
We left Lincoln this morning but first Bob felt the need to visit a plumber and get his water works going again. Minor delay, in and out in about an hour and a half. Then on to Grand Island to check out a stone in the cemetery there. His aunt Lulu was buried there but without a marker so he had one made. The first one was wrong so he had it fixed and was checking to make sure it was right.
Other pictures Bill took:
 Notice the fresh flowers....there were fresh flowers on the gravestone above also.
Next stop was a museum with a lot of Vifquain memorabilia ~a testimonial to General Vifquain
 the many battles fought by General Vifquain
 Military record of General Vifquain, paid in full ~ $1584.71
 Medal of Honor certificate for General Vifquain
Signed by President Andrew Johnson

June 2, 3:29 pm
I knew we were back in the sandhills of Nebraska ~ after leaving Grand Island we went north on highway 183 and were slightly delayed.

June 2, 3:32 pm
We're in Springview, Nebraska now, near where grandma and grandpa Phillip's farm was. Bob had reservations made at a 4 unit "motel" off the main drag. We pulled up out front, went inside unit #4 that he had reserved and the key was waiting for us on the counter. It was a real surprise to find out it included wifi.

June 2, 5:52 pm
We went and had supper at the Cattleman's lounge in Springfield and realized there was no place to eat breakfast so stopped at the grocery store. Bob thought he knew someone (in a round about way) that worked there. Turns out the daughter in law of the owners is the one he knew. He use to go camping with her grandparents. The owner picked up the phone and called her and about 5 minutes later she and her family walked in the back door. Lots of talking and then her husband went home and brought back a book that showed who owned the land in the county in 1912. Sections 22, 26, 27, and 28 show the Vifquain name. Bob also recognized lots of neighbors' names. He told how Jean and Bob would walk and Grandpa Phillip carried Leo on his shoulders as they walked about a mile south to listen to the Amos and Andy radio show on a neighbor's radio.

He told how Grandpa Phillip cut big blocks of ice from the creek running through section 28, put it in the ice house and covered it with straw and sawdust and that they still had ice the next fall.
June 3 ~ Bob and Bill were at the Burton cemetery looking at more family gravestones.  As much as I know, the genealogy goes something like this:
Lillie (born about 1855) married Peter John Phillip (parents of Willie Walter Phillip) 
Maggie (daughter, sister of Willie Walter) born 1882 (Son, Benjamin Palmer, born and died, 1915)
L. W. Palmer (Maggie's husband)
Louie (son of Maggie) born 1904
Helen (daughter of Maggie) born 1911
Helen married August C Spann (born 1906

Verde Hope Spann born and died 1917

Lillie Phillip (notice the spelling on the gravestone).
Gravestone of Benjamin Palmer, I believe (It looks as if the P and R of Palmer are missing)

Gravestone of Peter Phillip

June 4, 6:36 am
At the Willie Walter Phillip farm ~ The entrance to the storm cellar

June 4, 6:36 am
Inside the storm cellar

June 5, 7:43 am
Uncle Bob knows how to fix a good breakfast. Yesterday, sausage, eggs, hash browns and toast. Today it was cold cereal but with real milk, not the watered down some percent something or other. And some half and half to make the milk a little richer. Good stuff!

June 6, 8:09 pm
All good things must come to an end. Today was the funeral service for Uncle Leo. Had a good time with family before and after. Head for home tomorrow morning.

June 7, 6:55 pm
Home, a little under 2000 miles on my car and a little over 2000 miles on Bob's car. The closest thing to an accident was about 25 miles from home. A group of cars merging on to the freeway so I moved over to the left. One car swerved all the way over to get in the left lane. I braked hard and about that time he stuck his head out the window and looked back. Darwin will find him eventually.

Monday, March 16, 2015

In Memory ~ Leo Lane Phillip

  1. In Memory ~ Leo Phillip

“Leo,” “Dad,” and “Granddad”: Leo Lane Phillip, age 90, was surrounded by his family when he died Wednesday morning, March 11, 2015. He was born into an extended family that included brothers, aunts and uncles, and cousins. He was the youngest of four brothers; son of Alma (Vifquain) and Willie Phillip.
Leo was born in Springview, July 4, 1924 (all his life Americans celebrated his birthday). He graduated from Alliance High School in 1942, and joined the U.S. Navy in 1943. He saw action in European and Pacific theatres, aboard the U.S.S. Tulagi and was awarded numerous service ribbons, including the Philippine Liberation Star. He was discharged in 1945.
On Dec. 15, 1946, he married Zetta B. Lawler. They were married 62 years, until her death in 2009.
Leo’s working life was with Kembel Sand and Gravel, where he was a Bookkeeper and Dispatcher; Cawley’s Tater-Flakes, where he was Personnel and Office Manager; Metropolitan Life Insurance where he was a Salesman; and A.H. Jones Company of Alliance, where he was Parts Manager.
Leo was noted for his woodworking skills. He built furniture that is still in use today. He won awards at the County Fair for his pieces. In partnership with Zetta, who was a painter, they created decorative pieces that are prized by friends and family.
Throughout his life being with family was important to him. Gathering around the dining room table for board games or cards with children, grandchildren, and friends was a regular occurrence.
A life-long member of the Elks he enjoyed treating his family to Friday night dinners at the lodge. For over fifty years he was a member of the loan committee for Panhandle Co-op Credit Union. All his life he regularly donated blood. He was a long-time member of First Baptist Church in Scottsbluff, and later the Federated Church in Mitchell.
In 2010, he met Eva Lindsey, who became his new dancing partner. Together they spent time enjoying life, their families and friends.
Leo is survived by his children: Lynelle Gramm of Lake Geneva, Wis., Steven Phillip of Lincoln, Julie Phillip of Redlands, Calif., and Dean Phillip of Lincoln; and daughters-in-law Becky (Dean) Phillip of Lincoln, and Kathy Phillip of Lincoln. His grandchildren are Devin, Jerrod, Sarah, Elizabeth, Andrew, Daniel, and Stephanie. His great grandchildren are: Isaac, Briley, Kobe, Kyrie, Theo, Jadon, and Jonah. Brother Robert Phillip lives in Hermosa, S.D.
Leo was preceded in death by his parents and two of his brothers: Kenneth Phillip and Jean Phillip.

A memorial service and celebration of life is planned for June 6, 2015, at the Federated Church in Mitchell. Further details will be announced at a later date.
2014  ~ in his workshop in Scottsbluff

2011 ~ at Phillip Family Reunion in Alliance

2009 ~ at Zetta's funeral

2006 ~ in home in Scottsbluff

Thanksgiving, after 1953 at Alma Phillip's home

Thanksgiving, before 1953 with Mom & Dad, Alma and Willie, at parent's home at 503 Sweetwater in Alliance, Nebraska

Saturday, December 27, 2014

In Memory ~ Jean John Phillip

In Memory ~ Jean John Phillip

Life Legacy

Jean J. Phillip, 97, passed away Saturday, December 6, 2014 at Highland Park Care Center in Alliance. 

Jean was born November 13, 1917 to Willie W. and Alma M. (Vifquain) Phillip in Flat Top, Wyoming. He was raised near Burton and Springview, Nebraska and graduated from Keya Paha County High School in 1934. 

He was married to Maxine Donovan on April 26, 1941 at the Morrill County Courthouse in Bridgeport, Nebraska. 

He enlisted in the United States Navy on August 29, 1942 and was honorably discharged November 25, 1945 in Shoemaker, California. During his Navy career, he was stationed in Norman, Oklahoma; San Diego, California, and served aboard the USS Long Island in the Pacific Ocean. 

Jean was a career mason, plasterer and bricklayer in the Alliance area, retiring to teach building construction at Western Nebraska Technical College in Sidney, 1973 to 1980. Jean and Maxine returned to live in Alliance in 1980. 

He was a member of the United Methodist Church; lifelong member of the American Legion Post #7 serving as Post Commander 1968-1969; and long standing member of the Bricklayers Union #1. 

His survivors include his wife of 73 years, Maxine of Alliance; his son Jary (Dee) Phillip of Omaha and daughter Judy (Larry) Mann of Alliance; four grandchildren and nine great grandchildren: Jennifer (Tom) Shatel and their children, Sarah, Kate and Anna of Omaha; Alison (Kevin) Streck and their children, Olivia Sikora and Claire of Omaha; Cory (Sherry) Mann and their children, Colter and Chloe of Alliance, and Jared (Melanie) Mann and their children, Keaton and Gavin of Alliance He is also survived by his brothers, Robert Phillip of Hermosa, South Dakota and Leo Phillip of Scottsbluff, and numerous nieces and nephews. 

He was preceded in death by his parents, brother Kenneth and his wife Harriet Phillip; sisters in law Bernadine Phillip and Zetta Phillip. Also preceding him in death were in laws, Vivian and Charles Sherlock, Herb and Arleen McFall, and Harold and Ann Donovan. 

Funeral services will be held at 10:00 a.m., Thursday, December 11 at the United Methodist Church in Alliance with Pastor Tom Lucas officiating. Immediately following a private family burial, the family will welcome visitors at a luncheon at the Newberry, 404 Box Butte Avenue. 
Visitation will be Wednesday at the funeral home from 1-7 p.m. 

In lieu of flowers, memorials may be given to the Alliance United Methodist Church or a charity of the donor's choice.



12/12/2014 -

Dan Contonis

Dan Contonis has sent this Expressions of Sympathy card.

12/10/2014 -

Tammi Pierce

Judy we are sorry to hear about your dad. You and your family will be in our thoughts & prayers.

12/10/2014 -

cindy ellis

Many words describe this wonderful man. Classy kind intelligent. God be with his wife and family.

12/10/2014 -

Rav Nate Seitelbach

Praying for you all. Very sorry for your loss.

12/09/2014 -

Tim Cawthra

I was a student of Jean's at WNTC in Sidney. He always impressed me by is knowledge and skill in the Building trades. I went on to become a builder and a vocational teacher at the High School level. Great man and will be missed by all that he taught.

12/09/2014 -

Carolann & Richard Blanco

Our Sincere sympathies to all of Jean's family and friends. Jean taught us all how to be strong in our convictions but gentle in our actions. He truly touched our lives and our hearts.

12/09/2014 -

Jerry and Beverley Zwiebel

We were saddened to hear of Jean's death. Our prayers are with you all.

12/09/2014 -

Sparky Pryor and family

He will be greatly missed. Plenty of great memories. You are in our thoughts and prayers. 

12/09/2014 -

Ruth (Perez) Campbell

I will forever remember Jean as a very kind and gentle man. I loved visiting with him when I worked for the school system. I always enjoyed seeing him and his beautiful wife together as we sang sometimes for everyone at Crossroads. Rest in peace my dear friend. It was my honor to know you.

12/08/2014 -

Cindy & Don Zurn

Our sypmpathy to your family. Gene was a kind, gentle and wise man. Dad just now reminisced about how Gene taught him how to do arithmetic in grade school, and also installed glass block in their bathroom remodel. I'm sure he touched many peoples lives...and what a life he lived. Cherish your memories! 

12/08/2014 -

Mary Lee & Chris Ehrke

Jean was a wonderful man and will be remembered as a kind and caring husband, father, and grandfather. Our thoughts an prayers are with you. 

12/08/2014 -

Bette Gerlach

Jean was a great guy and he will be missed. Prayers to the family.

12/08/2014 -

Randy McMasters

My sincere condolences to Jean's family and friends.

-Randy McMasters

12/08/2014 -

Chuck & Kaye Dutton  

When a loved one goes home, all the angels rejoice.
Our prayers are with your family at this time.

In Memory ~ Harriet Jean Kelly Phillip

In Memory ~ Harriet Jean Kelly Phillip

Eulogy by Pastor Sue of Moscow Methodist Church
Keeping Time

         If you ever visited Harriet’s home, whether it was on Kenneth Avenue, at Good Samaritan Village, or even Aspen Park, you know she loved clocks.  We see one of the most unique ones before us today, her rhythm clock.  I hear there’s some competition in the family over who gets this
one.  There are plenty to go around.  She had 24 clocks, one for every hour of the day.  Kenneth built grandfather clocks.  I’m not sure if he built them because Harriet loved clocks, if she loved clocks because he built them, or if that was simply a common interest.
         There’s a hymn which says, “Time like an ever rolling stream bears all who breathe away.”  We are here today because Sunday morning time bore Harriet away. Towards the last couple of weeks, time had seemed to drag.  It was clear that her body at last was truly failing.  Her children had all come for one last visit.  Her family had told her it was OK to die.  Still she hung on.  I told her, “The Bible says there will be no more mourning or crying or pain.”  I assured her that God had forgiven her for any sins she might have committed.  She was barely able to talk by then, but she did manage to say, “That means a lot.”  Still she hung on.  It was almost as if time had stopped and those who loved her just waited.  Finally, early Sunday morning she died and many of us breathed a sigh of relief.
         She lived so much longer than anyone expected, including Harriet herself.  Ten years ago, not long after Kenneth’s death, she ended up in the hospital in Spokane with heart problems.  She didn’t expect to live for another decade.  When she and Bob got together they knew their combined health problems offered them a very limited future – and they had five years.  Her cancer diagnosis last fall led many of us to expect her death then.  It was not to be.
         Time did not diminish Harriet’s prodigious memory.  She often introduced me to family members saying, “she came to visit me in the hospital in Spokane just after she moved here.”  Honestly, I would have forgotten all about that if she did not remind me of it so often.  
         Sometimes her memory was almost too good.  When talking about the finer details of some long past event, Sharon would say to her, “Your memory is better than mine.”  “I know,” Harriet would reply.
         The Book of Ecclesiastes tells us, “For everything there is a season, and a time for every matter under heaven.”  Surely in her 92 years there have been many times and seasons.  It seems fitting that we gather to remember her on May Day.  As a child she would make construction paper baskets, fill them with flowers or candy and place them by neighbor’s doors and then run away.  As the flowers bloom today I wonder if children still make May baskets?  Today we know the gift of Harriet.  She has not so much run away as she has been born to a new life.
         When she got sick two weeks ago, she knew that her granddaughter Brittney had a bridal shower coming up.  She feared that her illness would spoil the shower.  One of the gifts for the new bride was Harriet’s cookbook. She had typed it out years ago, 70 pages of it, with favorite recipes along with notes about where they came from, who had made them, and other tidbits of history.  Many copies have been made.  It was the highlight of the shower, though a few tears were shed as well.  I hear the new bride may face some challenges in preparing those dishes, however, for some of the recipes are a little vague.  They say things like, “cook until done,” which made perfect sense to Harriet and for a new cook can be confusing.
The Cookbook
One of those cookbooks is here today.  I haven’t had a chance to look through it thoroughly.  My guess is that it has her specialties like brownies, donut holes, and Christmas cookies.  A LOT of Christmas cookies.  Truly for everything there is a season and a time for every matter under heaven.
         Harriet had time for the important things in life.  She met Kenneth when she worked at the movie theater in Belleville, Kansas popping corn.  Their kids say he loved movies and I’m sure that is true.  I do wonder if the other reason he went to the movies every time he was in Belleville was because she was there.  They married in Belleville and eventually moved to Nebraska where they raised their family.
         I’m sure there were moments as a mother when time ran short for her.  Somehow she got six children up and ready for Sunday School every week, often teaching a class herself.  Then there were Cub Scouts, Blue Birds, and Campfire and all the other things her children were involved in.  Harriet often doubted herself – and she raised a strong, confident daughter along with all those sons.
         She and Kenneth moved to Moscow in 1978 to be closer to several of their grown children.  When Kenneth died in 2004 they had been married for 64 years.  Now that’s what I call keeping time together.
         She built other relationships as well.  She always had renters in the basement apartment, but they were more than renters.  They were friends, and very nearly family.  She build relationships with the people she met at the Friendly Neighbors lunches, even taking one of them home with her while he was being treated for cancer and in the end, marrying him.
         “For everything there is a season and a time for every matter under heaven: a time to be born and a time to die.”  After 92 years Harriet’s time to die came at last at 7:30 Sunday morning.  The mystery and the wonder of the faith Harriet had lived for 92 years is that death itself is a form of birth.  The God who knit her together in the first place had a new life in store for her.  Gone is the body wracked with pain, the heart which struggled, and the legs which wobbled so that she needed a walker.  In its place God has given her a new body, a spiritual body, a body raised in power and glory.
         Time like an ever rolling stream bears all who breathe away, they fly forgotten as a dream dies at the opening day.”

         Here’s where that hymn doesn’t fit.  I am confident that Harriet will not be forgotten.  As her clocks tick steadily on, so does she live on.  As her family turn to those old recipes they’ll carry her memory forward.  God who was Harriet’s help for every matter under heaven is now her eternal home.  Today she is timeless.

90th birthday ~ 2011
Obituary ~ Harriet Jean Kelly Phillip, died at the age of 92 in Moscow, ID, on Sunday, April 27, 2014.


Harriet was born November 4, 1921, in Belleville, KS to Harry Kelly and Edith McKowen Kelly.  She graduated from Belleville KS high school in 1939 and went to Central Business College in Kansas City MO.  Harriet married Kenneth Phillip in 1940 in Manhattan, KS.  They were married for 64 years.  She later married Bob Crossin in Moscow ID.  Harriet worked after her children were enrolled in school at the Copsey Clinic in Alliance, NE and later at Crites-Moscow Growers in Moscow, ID, retiring in 1985.

Harriet was a busy homemaker for many years ~ she was a Sunday School teacher, Cub Scout leader, Blue Bird and Camp Fire leader.  Harriet enjoyed decorating cakes for friends and family.  In later years she made a family cookbook for all the family and a book containing stories of interest to the family.  Harriet was a member of the United Methodist Church in Alliance, NE and transferred her membership to the Moscow, ID Methodist Church.  She enjoyed playing pinochle with the Senior Citizens Club and regularly attended the Friendly Neighbor Senior dinners at the 1912 Building in Moscow.

Harriet is survived by her children ~ Ray and Judi, Newcastle, WA; Sharon and Tony Singleton, Moscow, ID; Dick and Cindy, Riverton, WY; Bill and Janet, Cheney, WA; Jim and; Kathie, Green River, WY; and Paul, Westminster, CO; as well as 13 grandchildren, and many great grandchildren, and one sister ~ Bernadine Wolfe of Arizona.

Harriet was preceded in death by her husband, Kenneth Phillip (2004); and Bob Crossin (2012), her parents, and two sisters.

Harriet’s funeral service will be held Thursday, May 1, at 2:00 p.m. at Short’s Funeral Chapel, Moscow ID, with Pastor Sue Ostrom (United Methodist Church) officiating.

Graveside services will be immediately following at the Moscow Cemetery.

Shorts Funeral Chapel is in charge of arrangements.

In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to the Friendly Neighbors located in the Senior Center at the 1912 Center, Moscow ID.

  1. Janine Haines says:May 4, 2014 at 2:33 pm have just returned from a visit to meet my first grandchild in Alabama, and read in paper about the passing of Harriet. We worked together at the Copsey Clinic in Alliance and became close friends. I was new to the Alliance area, just married and away from my home for the first time. Harriet stepped in and became a “mother,” figure, but also a friend. I enjoyed her and Ken. When I had my first son, Harriet and Ken were back in Alliance on a visit and stopped in with a gift, musical pull toy. I was able to attend their anniversary celebration held in Alliance also. We kept in touch with Christmas cards through the years. I am truly sorry for your loss, she was such a warm, loving, fun person. May you find comfort in knowing so many people cared about her.
    Cindy & Don Zurn says:May 5, 2014 at 3:20 am  Bill & Janet, so sorry on the passing of your mother. I remember her visit to the Knight Museum a few years back. She was very appreciative and grateful of life in general. May your many memories sustain you in the days to come.

Younger pictures of Harriet


graduation picture