McCAMEY Jack F. Phillips was born on November 10, 1930 in Dickens County on the family farm. He departed this life on Thursday, April 5, 2012, at the age of 81 years. Jack was at home surrounded by family, his favorite place to be, when he crossed over to his Heavenly reward. Services will be held at 3 pm on Saturday, April 7th, at the First United Methodist Church in McCamey, with internment at Restland Cemetery.|
Growing up on the family farm, Jack learned early the value of a hard day's work, something he carried with him throughout his life. He went to school in Patton Springs and was a member of the Duncan Flat Baptist Church, where his mother played piano from the time she could reach the keys. As he got older, his family had a band that played for many dances in the area, and at least one member of that family played for the annual Roaring Springs Old Settlers Reunion for the next 60 years running.
Eventually the oilfields lured Jack away from farming, and he began a career in Seminole that would span 37 years. He moved to Hobbs, Monahans, Odessa, and eventually settled in McCamey, working for what is now Shell Western E & P. He began at the bottom and eventually became an operations foreman, retiring in 1991. His years with Shell were very special to him, and he valued the many people who crossed his path throughout his career. Anyone who ever worked with Jack can attest to his work ethic; he never shirked a task.
In McCamey he met the love of his life, Sherry Gene. After seeing her around town for quite some time, he finally worked up the courage to ask her out on a date. Thankfully she said yes, and the next 48 years were the best of their lives. Building a family where integrity, character and honesty were not only taught and modeled, but were expected, they had an impact on not only their own children but on the many friends who passed through their home. Jack wasn't a very talkative person, but lived his life as an example, taking care of his own business but always extending a helping hand when it was needed.
Retirement provided an opportunity to spend more time with grandchildren and great-grandchildren. ""Papa Jack"" or ""Popo"" enjoyed fishing and nature, and was a student of the world around him. Although he wasn't formally educated, he was one of the most intelligent men his family knew. Jack loved to read and Elmer Kelton was one of his favorite authors, as was any book about the history and folk tales of Texas. Jack was generous with his time, helping out with maintenance at the First United Methodist Church where he was a 25-year member, and serving at various times over the years on the Upton County Appraisal District, Secretary of the Rural Fire Prevention District #2 (where he was instrumental in writing the by-laws and initial set-up of the organization), keeping records and handling burial arrangements for McCamey's two cemeteries; member of the McCamey Volunteer Fire Department for many years; and when his kids were involved, Badger Booster Club and maintenance at the Girl Scout Hut.
Pallbearers will be Cary Shackelford, Gil Shackelford, Chad Robertson, Trever Warren, Kirk Eddleman and neighbor, Chuck Kline. Honorary pallbearers will be Tommy Johnson, JJ Smith, Wayne Smith, Jack Perry, Charles Taylor, Ted Creech, Willie Bond, Roy Kephart, Lupe Ramirez, Jesse Valdez (represented by his son, Bobby), Jack Garner, Leo Watts, and CJ Kline, Jack's special young friend from down the street, who will be a ""junior"" honorary pallbearer.
Preceding him in death are his mother, Jewel Garrison Stephenson; mother-in-law & father-in-law, Kenneth & FaeGene Babcock.
Survivors are his wife of 46 years, Sherry; daughter, Shelley and husband Cary Shackelford of Wink; daughter, Lisa Phillips of Dana Point, CA; son, Chris Phillips and wife Kristin of Marble Falls; brother, Joe Stephenson and wife Donna of Hanover, CO; cousin, (but like a son) Kirk Eddleman and wife Karen of Weatherford; cousin, (like a sister) Wanda June ""Sis"" Terrell of Lubbock; cousin, (like a brother) Horace Henley and wife Mary of Bastrop; Yvonne Rogers (wife of Jack's late cousin Coy) of Pace, FL; mother-in-law, Blanche Regeon Babcock of Fayetteville, GA; sister-in-law, Reesa Phillips and husband Steve of Senoa, GA; sister-in-law, Ronda Weatherup and Michael of Brooks, GA; sister-in-law, Nanetta Phillips and husband John of Sealy, TX; grandchildren, Melissa Robertson and husband Chad of Sonora, Gil Shackelford of Midland, Lacy Warren and husband Trever of Alpine, Mikah, Eliya, Gavriella and Judah Phillips, all of Marble Falls; great-grandchildren, Reid & Sutton Robertson of Sonora, Tripp & Brody Warren of Alpine; numerous nieces and nephews. The family would like to thank Dr. Domingo & his staff, the 5th Floor Central nursing staff at Medical Center Hospital for doing their ""job"" with such care and compassion, Maribel and Nori with Compass Hospice of Odessa/Midland. Even though we didn't know some of you long, the impact you had on our lives during this difficult time will not be forgotten.
The family has asked that memorials be directed to the Veterans Memorial (being built in McCamey), PO Box 1409, McCamey, TX 79752. Services are being handled by Shaffer-Nichols Funeral Home. Guestbook may be signed at www.shaffer-nichols.com.
Published in Odessa American on Apr. 7, 2012