Twilah June Brigance Phillips Tate, 84, of Booneville passed on Feb. 28, 2019. She was born April 17, 1934, in the Tate community of Scott County to Benjamin "B.M." Minor and Easter "Roxie" (Boggs) Brigance. She grew up on a farm and took care of her younger siblings. Twilah was an excellent cook and seamstress. She graduated salutatorian of her Booneville High School class of 1952. She attended Ouachita Baptist University prior to marrying Bill Phillips in 1953. Twilah was a member of Glendale Baptist Church. At one time, Twilah and Bill owned Bill's Market in Greenwood.
Twilah dealt with many tragedies during her life. Her son, Victor Blake Phillips, died at age 20 from injuries sustained during a car accident in 1976. In 1983, her husband died suddenly. One month later, Twilah's mother died. She was left to manage the family farm milking 200 cows twice per day. Later, she obtained a nursing home administrator license. She worked for the Department of Human Services for the State of Arkansas in different roles. During this time, she developed lasting friendships with many of her co-workers including Ron Ford, the Logan County administrator. Twilah has always been a strong believer in the benefits of education. She leaves behind a son, a daughter-in-law and a grandson with Ph.D.s as well as a granddaughter attending university. Twilah married Rex Tate in 1994. Rex was a long-haul truck driver. Rex and Twilah had many adventures traveling around the country with cohort, Pokey Gilbert. They were married until Rex's death in 2017. In recent years, Twilah had two loving caregivers, Shirley Connor and David Powell.
She was preceded in death by her husband and the father of her children, Billy "Bill" Joe Phillips; their son, Victor B. Phillips; her husband, Charles Rex Tate; and her parents.
She is survived by her son, Lance G. Phillips, Ph.D., his wife Ann M. Roland, Ph.D., and their daughter, Elaine R. Phillips of Columbia, Mo.; grandson, Kevin G. Phillips, Ph.D., his wife, Sarah R. Landwehr and their children, Amelia J. and Leo W. of Astoria, Ore.; sister, Judith S. Burrows of Havana; brothers, Benny "Buck" Brigance and his wife Richea of Booneville, Jack Brigance and his wife Sharon of Greenwood and Mack Brigance and his wife Sharon of Booneville; and many beloved nieces and nephews.
Funeral service will be 2 p.m. Saturday, March 9, 2019, at McConnell Funeral Home Chapel in Greenwood with interment at Glendale Cemetery in Booneville.
Viewing will be 5-7 p.m. Friday, March 8, 2019, at the funeral home.
To sign an online guestbook, please visit www.mcconnellfh.com