Today my grandpa passed away peacefully in his sleep. He was dearly loved and will be greatly missed.
My favorite memory of grandpa involves popcorn and chicken coffee.
When I was a little girl, my sister and I would get to stay overnight at Grandpa and Grandma's house sometimes. We would play with the toys and watch movies on TV. Grandpa always liked the watch the same types of things on TV. Western movies, Bonanza or Little House on the Prairie -- if there was a western movie made, I've probably seen it at Grandpa's house.
So while watching a movie, Grandpa would make a pot of popcorn and Grandma would make some coffee for Grandpa. Of course, Shelly and I wanted to be just like Grandpa and have some coffee too. But little girls weren't allowed to have coffee, of course. So Grandma would let us make "chicken coffee." A mug of hot (lukewarm) water with a chicken bullion cube dissolved in it. Chicken Coffee. I remember being so proud to be old enough to have my own type of coffee just like Grandpa. And even now, when I see someone using those little chicken bullion cubes wrapped in gold foil, I think of my childhood and spending time with Grandpa and Grandma.
What I'll remember most about Grandpa is the huge love he had for Grandma. Everytime Grandpa would leave the house for an errand or anything, he's kiss Grandma good bye - then he'd kiss her again when he got home. Before and after each meal, before bed, upon waking ... I think they invented reasons to kiss. No, not just a little peck either ... a big ol' sloppy kiss that showed the passion they had for each other. The kind of kiss you'd tease someone to "get a room" - the kind of kiss that showed their huge love for each other.
Whenever they were sitting next to each other, they'd be holding hands or Grandpa's hand would be on Grandma's shoulder. They would want to be touching in some way. Their love for each other was always evident throughout the years. I look to them to know that true love can endure the years and can give a person happiness right up until the very last breath you take.
My family asked me to write Grandpa's obituary. I'm including it here:
Beloved husband, father and grandfather, Willard “Buck” Phillips, passed away peacefully onApril 27, 2009at his home inStandish,Michiganat age 85.Buck was born onFebruary 29, 1924to parents Wilma and Ralph Phillips inClare,Michigan.OnApril 2, 1946he married his sweetheart, Florence Marie Wolfe and they spent 63 happy years together.
Buck served from 1943-1946 inthe 29thInfantry Division of the U.S. Army in the European Theater during World War II where he earned a CIB Badge, Purple Heart and Bronze Star.He has been an active member of VFW Post 3724, American Legion Post 104, Military Purple Heart Post 2000 and the Independent Order of Odd Fellows.Buck spent his working years in Two State Oil Fields, Hachelt Stock Yards and L.E. Myers Construction before retiring from the Bay City Chevrolet plant in 1980.
Buck is survived by his wife,Florence, and their three daughters: Nancy (Dale) Sanders; Gloria (Neil) Frost and Penny (Lester) Tremble.He is proceeded in death by daughter Sally Kay.
He was much adored grandfather to: Pamela Tremble; Shelly (Eric) Grider; Brad (Destiny) Sanders; Neil (Cindy) Frost; Lisa (John) Lacy; Allen (Melissa) Tremble; Brian Frost and Becky Frost.Great-Grandchildren include: Joshua, Makayla, Austin, Tyler, Aaron, Christian, Alexis, Dakota, Devin, Krista and Jacob.
Buck was the oldest of his siblings, who include: Doris Kile (deceased), Larry Siel, Fern Deveneaux, Wilfred Siel, Wilber Siel (deceased), Donna Young, Donald Siel (deceased), Dennis Phillips, Irene Taylor, Ilene Ream, Ronald Phillips, Virgil Phillips (deceased), Betty Watson, Ralph Phillips and Jeanette Phillips (deceased).