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William J. Phillips 1946-2023

William J. Phillips of Ledyard, also known as Bill and formally of Clinton, passed away peacefully in his home on March 9, 2023. Born on May 14, 1946 to the late William and Josephine (Griffiths) Phillips in Scarborough, Yorkshire, England, the family immigrated to the U.S. in 1958, where they lived in Hartford, where Bill came to love America.


He leaves behind, his wife of 37 years, Janette Phillips; their son, Matthew; their daughter, Josephine (Manny); their daughter, Christina; his brother and Sister-in-Law, Tony and Kathy Phillips, his nephews, Paul and Andrew Phillips and Grand nephews, Ian and Collin. He was predeceased by his niece, Beth Phillips. Bill was also predeceased by his beloved Mother and Father-in-Law, Frances (‘Babe’ Lombardo) and Dennis Thibodeau of Pawcatuck.


Bill was a very calm, content, humble man who loved spending time with his family and friends, surf-cast fishing on the shore up and down the East Coast, raising racing Pigeons, antique cars, driving his cadillac (caddie) in past years, listening to oldies-rock-and-roll music and watching football; especially his favorite quarterback, Patrick Mahomes of the Kansas City Chiefs and was overjoyed to see them win the superbowl this year! Anyone who knew him, knew how big and open his heart was, ready to use his common sense and speak the truth, but also taking care of whoever was around him.


Bill’s Catholic roots had a strong hold on him throughout his life and grew deeper and deeper as life went on. Along with the joys, God sent Bill incredible suffering, both emotional and physical, but as Bill would say “He won’t give you more than you can bare” and he really believed that. These last 11 years fighting cancer really prepared Bill for death and gave him a real hope for the life to come. He bared his various crosses willingly in a non selfish manner, which united him with God in a very intimate way, these last few years in particular. He taught us all how to transform suffering.


A Funeral Mass will be held at Noon on March 18, 2023 at the Immaculate Conception Church on 111 High Street in Westerly, RI, with a reception immediately following in the Church hall. In lieu of flowers, please consider making a donation in Bill’s honor to the Immaculate Conception Church or to Our Lady of Guadalupe Marian Friary at 199 Colonel Brown Rd. Griswold, CT.


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