Phyllis Herndon Brissenden 1933 - 2019Read More
Springfield , IL—Phyllis Herndon Brissenden, 86, of Springfield, died at 10:35 p.m. on Tuesday, December 17, 2019 at Memorial Hospice at Heritage Health. She was born on March 31, 1933 in Springfield, the daughter of Obed Lewis Herndon and Marian (Matheny) Herndon. In 1978, she married Walter F. Brissenden, who died in 1986.
Mrs. Brissenden graduated Magna Cum Laude from Sweet Briar College in Sweet Briar, Virginia. She became a member of Phi Beta Kappa academic honor society in 1955. In 1954, she was queen of the annual Beaux Arts Ball of the Springfield Art Association.
Her major interest was music. She was a member of the Board of Directors of the Springfield Symphony Orchestra from the early 1980s until 1993, when the orchestra consolidated with the Bloomington-Normal Orchestra Society to form the Illinois Symphony Orchestra. Mrs. Brissenden continued as a member of the Board of Trustees of the Illinois Symphony for many years. When she retired from the board, she was named a life trustee of the organization.
Mrs. Brissenden was a founding supporter of Opera Theatre of St. Louis, serving on its National Patrons Committee and later was named a life board member. She was also a member of the National Council of the Metropolitan Opera of New York.
A lover of nature, she made many bird-watching tours in the United States and to remote parts of the world. She was an ardent supporter of environmental causes, serving on the boards of the Illinois Audubon Society and the Adams Wildlife Sanctuary in Springfield.
Mrs. Brissenden was a lifelong active member of Christ Episcopal Church, where she served two terms on the vestry.
She was a member of Kappa Alpha Theta sorority and a former member of the Junior League of Springfield.
Mrs. Brissenden is survived by several cousins; many devoted friends; and her beloved dog, Fergus.
Funeral Ceremony: 11:00 a.m. on Monday, December 23, 2019 at Christ Episcopal Church, 611 East Jackson, Springfield with the The Rev. Dr. Gregory A. Tournoux officiating. Burial will follow at Oak Ridge Cemetery.
Memorial contributions may be made to the Adams Wildlife Sanctuary, 2315 Clear Lake Ave., Springfield, IL 62703; the Nature Conservancy of Illinois, 8 South Michigan Ave, Chicago, IL 60603; and the Illinois Symphony Orchestra, P.O. Box 5191, Springfield, IL 62701.
The family of Phyllis Herndon Brissenden is being served by Boardman-Smith Funeral Home, 800 S. Grand Avenue West, Springfield.
Please visit boardmansmith.com to offer your condolences.