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Phillips Family Thanks Clemson

Phillips Family Thanks Clemson

Sept. 23, 2003

Dear Clemson Family,

The Phillips family would like to express its sincere gratitude for the enormous outpouring of love and support after the passing of Jim Phillips on September 9, 2003. From the time we announced the news that morning and the phones began ringing off the hook on talk radio, to the beautiful media coverage, to the heartfelt sympathy from all Tiger fans, your poignant and often funny stories provided true therapy for our family during very sorrowful times.

Your fond remembrances turned sorrow over loss into celebration of life and helped us appreciate how blessed our family was to know the man we called father, grandfather, husband and brother. The week that began so painfully, ended gloriously with a night in Death Valley we will never forget.

Thanks to Central Spirit and all of the other campus organizations that worked so hard under difficult circumstances. Thanks to Mark Spede and Tiger band for the script “JIM”. We hear you put that together on very short notice. You truly are “The Band That Shakes The Southland”. Thanks to Rick Bagby for the moving video tribute at halftime. It gave us chills. Thanks to Tim Bourret for pinch-hitting for a close friend, and hitting a grand slam.

Thanks to the broadcast crew: Jeff Bright, engineer; Sack Bagley, spotter; Harold Vigodsky, statistician; Will Merritt, Pete Yanity and old friend Rodney Williams. And we don’t want to forget Tiger Tailgate and the beautiful tributes from Jim’s friends.

Thanks to Clemson University for the remarkable class and consideration shown our family. Thanks to Bob Fulton for a memory all football fans in South Carolina will cherish forever. And most of all, thanks to you, Clemson fans, for showing us how much you loved the man we loved so much.

Jim Phillips’ spirit was truly present that night. And we hope to keep that giving spirit that made him the man he was, alive in the future. Jim does have a book completed and we will hopefully be releasing it next football season. There also will be an audio highlights CD and a Celebrity Golf Tournament is in the works. All proceeds from these ventures will be donated to Jim’s charity of choice, Special Olympics, with small amounts to be reserved for his granddaughter Erica’s college fund. Hopefully to attend Clemson University in 2008.

Our loss was also your loss. But his journey is complete, and Jim Phillips is home. The only place he’d rather be than Clemson, SC.


Jeff Phillips, Terri and Eric Blackmon, Erica Blackmon, Ruth Phillips, Janine Regan, Gary and Kim Adkins, Josephine Adkins