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James Gilbert Phillips, Jr.

Jan 24, 2024

August 16, 1947 – January 15, 2024

James Gilbert Phillips, Jr., age 76, passed away at Mountain View Hospital, Payson, Utah due to Prostate Cancer and Myelodysplastic Syndrome.

Jim was born August 16, 1947 in Albuquerque, Bernalillo, New Mexico, the only child of James Gilbert Phillips, Sr. and Lillie Maie Payne. When Jim was young, the family moved to Ohio for 5 years and then to Santa Fe, New Mexico and back to Albuquerque.

His dad, Gil Phillips, was heavily involved in Boy Scouts, and Jim followed suit by having his own troop at a young age. Jim’s dad worked at Eberline Instrument Company which became Jim’s first job. He attended schools in Albuquerque, and lived with his grandmother, Minnie Lee Cantrell Payne, while he attended the University of New Mexico. He was a member of the First Methodist Church and was active in the church choir and handbell choir.

He loved all things outdoors, especially his beloved Sandia Mountains, elev. 10,678 ft. He loved to ski and even skied for the Santa Fe Ski Patrol.

When the Vietnam War started and being drafted was eminent, Jim decided that rather than being drafted and having no choice, he would enlist. So, in 1969 he enlisted in the Navy as an Electronics Technician. He was sent to the Great Lakes Naval Station and sang in the Great Lakes Bluejackets Choir. This is where he met Linda. She was dating another sailor and immediately dropped him and went after Jim. He excelled in all his classes and became an ET instructor for the Navy. He was transferred to San Diego and served aboard the USS Bon Homme Richard (CV-31). He was transferred to the Arco Test Site in Idaho as an ET Instructor.

During this time, Jim lived in Pocatello, Idaho with his Navy buddy, Dale Sivert. One day they decided to go to Blackfoot to learn how to fly. There they met Don Novas, a crop duster, who nurtured their love of flying. Don also shared with them his love for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Jim became a lifelong member and was instrumental in Linda’s conversion. They were married in Blackfoot, Idaho, and sealed in the Salt Lake Temple on the 12th of October 1972.

Jim worked various jobs during the early years of their marriage, but a service-related injury to his back limited his abilities. He was discharged from the Navy in 1973.

Since his favorite thing was camping in winter with his dad, they started teaching people about being safe in the winter. Jim and his dad developed a foam clothing system called PALS (Phillips Arctic Living System) which won Popular Science Best of What’s New for 1985 and took Jim Lovell on his North Pole Expedition as well as many on the Iditarod race.

Jim and Linda lived in Blackfoot, Idaho, Pleasant Grove, Utah, and finally his beloved Spring City. He was lovingly called, “Mr. Preparedness,” and will be known for his Wednesday and Saturday zoom classes, foam clothing, Kombucha, toothpicks, red pocket knife, but especially his love of the Lord and his family. Jim was a hard-working man and never gave up.

Jim is survived by his wife of 52 years, Linda, and his posterity: James (Amy) Phillips, Mike (Becky) Phillips, Jon (Tavonny) Phillips, Steve (Teresa) Phillips, Adam (Kristie) Phillips, Scott (Charyl) Phillips, Kristen (Joshua) Johnson, Sarah (Sam) Shaffer, and Allison May Elizabeth Phillips. He was preceded in death by his parents; James Gilbert Phillips, Sr., Lillie Maie Payne Phillips; adopted brother, Christopher Gordon Frum Phillips; foster brother, John Ogle; son-in-law, Joshua Kent Johnson; and grandson, Stephen Clarence Shaffer.

Funeral Services were held January 20, 2024 at 11:00 am in the Spring City Historic Rock Church. Viewings January 19, 2024 from 6-8 pm and January 20, 2024 from 9:30 – 10:30 am prior to services. Interment in the Spring City Cemetery. Online condolences at rasmussenmortuary.com.