Philip Rhy Paris
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February 28, 1947 - August 12, 2014
Rhy was born February 28, 1947, in Chillicothe MO to Barrington Lyle Paris and Lena Ruth (Anderson) Paris. He graduated from Chillicothe High School in 1965. From the time he started fifth grade in 1955, he worked for his uncle, Lewis Anderson, who owned a women's ready-to-wear store, until graduating high school in 1965. He also attended William Jewel College in Liberty, MO.
Rhy joined the U.S. Air Force and served from 1966 - 1970 as a Weapons Control Systems Mechanic obtaining the rank of Sergeant. Mr. Paris also served as a Security Police augmentor while stationed at Ubon RTAFB, Thailand.
In 1966, while stationed at Lowry AFB in Denver, Colorado, Mr. Paris met Sharon Kay Pahler. They were married on May 13, 1967, at St. Joseph's Church in Grand Junction, CO and have been happily married for 47 years.
Upon discharge from the US Air Force, Mr. Paris worked as a department manager, assistant manager, and manager for Gibson's Discount Centers in Farmington, NM and Durango, CO from 1970 - 1975.
While in Farmington, NM their first son, Philip Sean Paris, was born on January 4, 1971, and only lived for a few hours due to medical complications brought on by premature birth. He passed away on January 5, 1971.
While living in Durango, Mr. Paris joined the Durango Police Department as a Reserve Officer in 1972, and in 1975, he accepted a full time position as a Police Officer with the Durango Police Department. He attended Colorado Law Enforcement Training Academy in Golden, Colorado in 1976, for Basic Police Officer Standards Training (POST) and returned in 1977 for the Advanced Accident Investigation training.
While living in Durango, their second son, Barrington Frederick Paris, was born on March 17, 1977.
In 1979, the Paris family moved to Grand Junction, CO. Mr. Paris worked in partnership in the sign business with his friend, Jim Cook, for about one year and in 1980, Mr. Paris went to work for the local cable TV company.
On November 12, 1983, their daughter, Kristin Ruth Paris, was born in Grand Junction, CO.
Mr. Paris worked for the cable TV company for 21 years. He then used his Veterans benefits to attend school and obtained a position as Administrative Assistant at the Veterans Memorial Cemetery of Western Colorado, which was with the State of Colorado, in 2002. Mr. Paris maintained this employment until 2010 when he was forced into medical retirement due to health issues.
Mr. Paris spent much time as a volunteer in various worthwhile endeavors. He worked with the Boy Scouts of America for many years, and received numerous awards, including the Silver Beaver and The Order of the Arrow Vigil Honor. Mr. Paris also served as a First Aid and CPR instructor with the American Red Cross, and as a Personal Protection Instructor and Basic Pistol Instructor with the National Rifle Association, of which he was a Life Member.
Mr. Paris was very active in the veterans community as well and was a Life Member of Vietnam Veterans of America serving in the local VVA Chapter 57 and the Colorado State Council. He was a Life Member with the Veterans of Foreign Wars, American Legion, Disabled American Veterans, and Vietnam Security Police Association. Mr. Paris was also a founding member of the Grand Valley Combined Honor Guard and was a member of Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War, a member of Sons of Confederate Veterans, as well as Sons of the American Revolution and The Colorado Society of the War of 1812.
Mr. Paris was a Christian and active church member and served in several leadership roles. He was a trained Stephen Minister and Christ Care Small Group Leader and at his time of passing he and his wife were members of Covenant Presbyterian Church.
Mr. Paris is survived by his wife, Sharon Paris of Grand Junction; son, Barry Paris of Denver, CO; daughter, Kristin (James) Howe of Grand Junction; three granddaughters, Reigan Paris Wilkinson of Grand Junction; Jayln Paris of Roosevelt, UT, and Emily Howe of Grand Junction. His bother, David Lewis Francis Paris of Grand Junction, CO also survives him. He was preceded in death by his parents, and numerous other family members.
Cremation has taken place and a memorial service will be held at Covenant Presbyterian Church on August 18, 2014, at 1:00 p.m. Interment will be at the Veterans Memorial Cemetery, 2830 Riverside Parkway, Grand Junction, CO at 3:00 p.m. on August 18th, with full military honors provided by the Grand Valley Combined Honor Guard. Immediately following interment, a reception will be held for family and friends at Covenant Presbyterian Church, 237 32 Road, in Grand Junction, CO.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations be made in Mr. Paris' name to the Veterans Memorial Cemetery, the Grand Valley Combined Honor Guard, or HopeWest Hospice of Grand Junction.
Published in The Daily Sentinel on Aug. 17, 2014