Mr. Phillips was born in Washington County, son of the late Ed Phillips, Sr. and Ora Fritz Phillips. In addition to his parents, Mr. Phillips was also preceded in death by three brothers, Ed Phillips, Jr., Carlos Phillips and Perry Phillips.
Mr. Phillips was of the Protestant faith. He was a United States Army Veteran and served in the Tennessee Army National Guard. Mr. Phillips graduated from East Tennessee State University with an Associate of Science Degree and Majoring in Criminal Justice.
He was a Commissioner for the Tennessee Department of Safety from January 2003-January 2006, Sheriff for Washington County, Tenn., from Sept. 1, 1994, until Jan. 15, 2003, Deputy Commissioner for Tennessee Department of Safety, Director/Tennessee Law Enforcement Training Academy, Public Safety Director, Johnson City Police Chief, Special Agent for Tennessee Bureau of Investigation, Detective Lieutenant, and Detective Sergeant. Mr. Phillips received the law enforcement commendation medal for outstanding service and dedication to the maintenance of law and order award given at Johnson City by the National Society of the Sons of the American Revolution. By unanimous vote, he was selected as Tennessee Sheriff of the Year, elected member of the Board of Directors of the National Sheriff’s Association and elected President of the Tennessee Sheriff’s Association. He was appointed by Gov. Don Sundquist to the statewide Public Safety Committee. He was Chairman of the East Tennessee Law Enforcement Executive Council. Mr. Phillips was appointed by the governor as amember of Peace Officers’ Standards and Training Commission.
Survivors include his wife, Verla Davis Phillips, Jonesborough; son and daughter-in-law, Doug and Jenny Phillips, Elizabethton; daughter, Anita Fink, Johnson City; sister, Brenda Bryant, Jonesborough; grandchildren, Angela Fink, Austin Fink, Kane Phillips and Luke Phillips; and two great-grandchildren, Nathan Fink and Grayson Fink.
Funeral services will be conducted 7 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 14, 2012, at Dillow-Taylor Funeral Home with Chaplain Dennis Hamm officiating. The family will receive friends from 2-4 p.m. and 5-7 p.m. Sunday prior to the service. Interment services will be conducted 10 a.m. Monday, Oct. 15, 2012, at Mountain Home National Cemetery.
Pallbearers will be Richard Pectol, Ed Graybeal, John Lowry, Austin Fink, Cory Gage, Kane Phillips and Richard Cox. Honorary pallbearers will be Lincoln Higgins, Taylor Bettis, Bill Thomas, Bob Denny, Henry Samples, Joel Seal, Luke Phillips, Johnson City Police Department, Washington County Sheriff Department and State Highway Patrol.
Condolences may be sent to the Phillips family online at www. dillow-taylor.com. Dillow-Taylor Funeral Home & Cremation Services, Jonesborough, 753-3821.