Martha Helen Burns Phillips obituary photo
 
In Memory of

Martha Helen Burns Phillips

May 23, 1924 - May 14, 2017

Obituary


Services for Martha Helen Burns Phillips, "Nanna", age 92 of Tyler, will be held at 3 p.m., Wednesday, May 17, 2017 in the chapel at Lloyd James Funeral Home under the direction of Dr. David O. Dykes and Kevin Burdette. Visitation will be held from 1 to 3 p.m. preceding the services. Burial will be at Cathedral in the Pines.

Mrs. Phillips passed away at Hospice of East Texas on Sunday, May 14, 2017, nine days shy of her 93rd birthday. She was born Martha Helen Burns on May 23, 1924, in Pine Bluff,...

Services for Martha Helen Burns Phillips, "Nanna", age 92 of Tyler, will be held at 3 p.m., Wednesday, May 17, 2017 in the chapel at Lloyd James Funeral Home under the direction of Dr. David O. Dykes and Kevin Burdette. Visitation will be held from 1 to 3 p.m. preceding the services. Burial will be at Cathedral in the Pines.

Mrs. Phillips passed away at Hospice of East Texas on Sunday, May 14, 2017, nine days shy of her 93rd birthday. She was born Martha Helen Burns on May 23, 1924, in Pine Bluff, Arkansas, the third of six children to Andrew Louis and Ila Mae Burns.

Education was a significant part of her family, with her father being the Superintendent of Schools for Pine Bluff and Magnolia, Arkansas, and her mother also a teacher in the schools. Martha graduated as Valedictorian from Magnolia High School in 1942. She then continued her education at Texas Women's College (now known as Texas Women's University, TWU) majoring in Home Economics, specializing in Dietary Science. As a part of her certification to become a Registered Dietician, Mrs. Phillips served an internship with the Veterans Administration (V.A.) Hospital in New York City, and subsequently graduating from TWU with a B.S. in Home Economics in August, 1946.

While serving as a Dietician for the V.A. Hospital in Gulfport, Mississippi, in 1953, two of Martha's co-workers in the kitchen set her up on a date with their brother-in-law, Thomas Ray Phillips, a Highway Patrol officer for the State of Mississippi. Martha and Ray were married on February 21, 1954. Martha and Ray moved to Tyler with their family in 1959 to open Phillips Hearing Aid Center. Martha retired from Mother Francis Hospital as the Head of Dietary in 1981. She worked in bookkeeping at Southside Bank and with Ray in the hearing aid business.

Mrs. Phillips was a devoted Christian and leader, living her life ministering to her family and to others in her church and community. She taught children's Sunday school at Green Acres Baptist Church, was active in the Outreach Center Clothes Closet and Meal Service, and the widows in need (WIN) ministry. Mrs. Phillips went on mission trips to Mexico with the Missions Ministry of GABC, conducting Bible Schools in these communities for years. She was a member of the Highest Praise Senior Choir and with the Care and Share Sunday School Class at Green Acres Baptist Church.

Martha is preceded in death by her husband of 53 years.

She is survived by her brother Alvin Burns of Dallas. Mrs. Phillips is also survived by her son Harold Phillips and wife Janice; her daughter Nancy Phillips Davis and husband ("favorite" son-in-law) Frank. "Nanna" is survived by three grandsons; Robert Davis and wife Ginger, Chad Phillips and wife Whitney, and Jeffrey Davis and his wife Lauren. Nanna is also survived by one great-grandson, Thomas Roy Davis, with whom she shares the same birthdate.

Pallbearers are the three grand-sons; nephew Michael Burns; and family friend Pete McGee. Honorary Pallbearers will include John Stroud and members of the Jeff Schwartz Sunday Morning Bible Study Class at Green Acres Baptist Church.

Memorials may be given in honor of Martha B. Phillips to the Green Acres Baptist Church Foundation and to the Hospice of East Texas or a charity of your choice.