James Frank Phillips, 85, passed away on Tuesday, September 27, 2016 very peacefully with his family with him. James grew up in Murray Kentucky, which is a place he always held close to his heart. He was born on September 4, 1931 to the late Coil and Lavada Phillips. He served his country in the US Air Force between 1951 – 1957. He was a faithful member of Sharon Baptist Church where he was treasurer for the Baptist Men for many years. He enjoyed fixing things at the church and helped to cook many outdoor meals on the grill for church socials.
In Kentucky he was a dark fire and burley tobacco farmer as well as a construction worker. Then he became a USDA tobacco grader with the Government of the United States of America for twenty years before retiring. Later Granville County, Oxford, NC became his home where he met his wife of twenty-six years, Daune Keranakis Phillips. In between working on the tobacco market and being retired, he enjoyed farming flue-cured tobacco in Goshen, refinishing antique furniture, and building many wood projects.
Surviving in addition to his wife are two sons, James F. “Skip” Phillips, Jr., Steven T. Phillips (Kim) and three daughters, Vicki Linzy (Tim), Patricia Phillips, and Sheila Alexander (Dean); two sister, Jackie Armstrong, Sue Hall, (Bobby); seven grandchildren, Dana Presnell (J. R.), Bobby Washer (Bobbie Jo), James F. “Jay” Phillips, III (Beth), Jessica Phillips, Kristen Phillips, Jeremy Phillips (Sheila), and Brandon Phillips; great grandchildren, Kalynn Kee (Jake), William Washer, Brittany Washer, and Jaelyn Phillips all from Kentucky.
James is also survived by a large North Carolina family, his step-children, Theresa Jones (Bradley), Darrell Keranakis (Winfree), and Terry Keranakis; step grandchildren, Kelly Watkins, Jason Jones (Jennifer), Jessica Poole (Phillip), Michelle Williford (John Thomas), Lauren Keranakis, Sara Keranakis, Jordan Mason, and Parker Mason; great grandchildren, Isaac Watkins, Caleb Watkins, Dawson Williford, Macie Williford, Chloe Jones, Sadie Poole, and Rhys Jones.
The funeral service will be held at Sharon Baptist Church on Friday September 30, 2016 at 11:00am and will be conducted by Reverend Vernon Wilkerson. Visitation will be held prior to the service at 10:00am at the church. Burial will follow in the church cemetery.
Flowers are accepted or memorials may be made to Sharon Baptist Church c/o Ray Huff, 7021 Goshen Road, Oxford, NC 27565 or St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, PO Box 1000, Dept. 42, Memphis, TN 38148.
Gentry – Newell & Vaughan Funeral Home is handling the arrangements for the Phillips family.
Online condolences can be made at www.hallwynne.com.