Philip Rice
1955 - 2017
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Philip Rice
EAST PEORIA - Philip C. "Phil" Rice, 61, of East Peoria passed away Thursday, Feb. 2, 2017, at his residence.
He was born Aug. 3, 1955, in Peoria to Charles and Marilyn (Thompson) Rice.
Phil is survived by two brothers, Stephen (Kimiyo) Rice of Gaithersburg, Md., and Douglas (Joan) Rice of Morton; one sister, Paula Eleam of Morton; three nieces, Teresa Altman, Elizabeth Rice and Sarah Eleam; and two nephews, Brian and Aaron Eleam.
He was preceded in death by his parents; nephew, Erik Eleam; and brother-in-law, Dennis Eleam.
Phil graduated from high school in Glasgow, Scotland, and attended the American College of Switzerland in Leysin, Switzerland, for two years.
Phil worked 22 years for the United States Postal Service in the Peoria Postal Encoding Center and worked the past 12 years as a career employee. Prior to that, Phil worked 20 years at Radio Shack, where in 1976 he bought his first computer with 4K memory. It was the size of a large breadbox!
When Phil was 15 years old, he was introduced to Ham radios and began a lifetime of love for the medium. He held call signs from 5 different countries, including Scotland, Switzerland, Belgium and the Unites States, where he had resided in all, with additional country of Belize. At age 20 (1975), Phil had the honor of assisting at the International Telecommunication Union in Geneva, Switzerland, where he operated call sign 4U1ITU on behalf of the United Nations. In December of 1991, Phil travelled to Belize and operated call sign V31-EE, achieving a new record with respect to the number and speed with which he made radio contacts.
Throughout his life, Phil was an active member of the Heart of IL Repeater Club, the 97 Club and the Peoria Area Amateur Radio Club.
A memorial service for Philip will be held at 11 a.m. Saturday, Feb. 11, 2017, at Knapp-Johnson Funeral Home in Morton, with Pastor Gary Motta officiating. Visitation will be from 9:30 to 11 a.m., prior to the service at the funeral home. Burial of cremated remains will be held at Roberts Cemetery.
Cremation rites have been accorded.
Memorials may be made to the American Cancer Society, West Central Regional Office, 4234 N. Knoxville Ave., Peoria IL 61614; or the Heart of Illinois Down Syndrome Association, 325 E. Queenwood Rd., Morton, IL 61550.
The family wishes to thank his longtime friend, Merle Joiner; and his OSF Hospice nurse, Christine. They would also like to extend their appreciation to his nurses, Laurie, Mary, Karen and Teresa, for their kind care and compassion.
Online condolences may be sent to the family at

To Plant Memorial Trees in memory, please visit our Sympathy Store.
Published in Peoria Journal Star from Feb. 6 to Feb. 8, 2017.
Please consider a donation, as requested by the family.
Memories & Condolences
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10 entries
February 11, 2017
I am sorry to hear of Phil's passing. I worked with him at the REC site for the USPS, and then downtown at the processing plant. We worked different shifts, but we'd pass each other from time to time. I am sorry for the family's loss.
Sue Stephenson
February 8, 2017
My condolences to Philip's family. Enjoy your wonderful memories forever. Marilyn and Chuck are with Philip in a better place.

Casey Schmitt
February 8, 2017
you will be missed..... rest in peace Phil...
Jim Burgard
February 7, 2017
So sorry to hear this news. I worked with Phil at the REC. Prayers to his family and friends.
Ronda Smith
February 7, 2017
Comfort prayers for the family - it has been a difficult few months for his siblings.
John Hull
February 7, 2017
R.I.P. Phil. You will be missed by many.
Thomas Long, KC9PH
February 7, 2017
I worked with Phil at the remote encoding center as well as the mail processing plant. He was my buddy at our early morning visits to the Variety Club and the Paradice Casino after a hard nights work. I'm truly saddened to hear of his passing. He was a great guy with a big heart and I'm very sorry for the family's loss.
Timi Barnes-Thune
February 7, 2017
Sad to hear the news.. He was a great guy, and I always enjoyed our conversations.. My condolences to his family and friends..
Stephanie Adkins
February 7, 2017
February 4, 2017
I worked with Phil for many years at the Post Office. He was a very smart man and I liked talking with him. So very sorry for your loss.
Sherry Spangler
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