John Otto Phillips, Jr., “Jack”, departed this life Sunday, May 22, 2022,
at the home of his daughter, Joanna, in Pensacola, Florida. Jack was born
to Florentine Holmes and John O Phillips, Sr. in Miami, Florida August 20,
Jack spent his early years in Manchester, Tennessee where he and his family
were very involved in the community. He was an Eagle Scout, lifeguard at
the local swimming pool, high school football player, active member of the
United Methodist Church and worked at Evans grocery store.
He attended Coffee County schools and graduated in 1953. He began his
college life at Vanderbilt University prior to receiving an Appointment by
Tennessee Congressman Joe L. Evins to the United States Naval Academy.
While wrestling at the Naval Academy, Jack sustained an injury which
disqualified him from remaining as a Midshipman and he had to leave the
academy. Jack continued his studies at the University of Tennessee (UT) and
ultimately graduated with honors and a business degree. While at UT, Jack
was a member of the UT Singers ensemble. Jack received a MS in Management
from Rollins College in 1971.
Upon graduation, Jack went to work at Chrysler Corporation in Huntsville,
Alabama. While working at Chrysler Jack met Mary Dudley Call. They were
married May 1963 and had four children. After spending several years with
Chrysler, he was hired by the National Aeronautics Space Administration
(NASA) and moved to Titusville, Florida. While employed by NASA for 30+
years, he was involved in many projects including Apollo Missions, booster
rocket redesign for the Space Shuttle and the Hubble Telescope among many
others. Jack received several awards and accolades for his work at NASA.
Jack married JoAllen Rogers May 6, 1978. After spending time in Huntsville,
Al, Pass Christian, MS and Danbury, CT, they returned to live in their
hometown of Manchester, TN in 1984.
Following his retirement, Jack began looking for a way to stay busy and
spend as much time as possible at the family farm. Together, Jack and Jo
opened The Fairway Driving Range on Interstate Drive. Jack was always
working on a project and could often be found scouring local junk yards to
find parts for cars he was fixing up. He enjoyed watching sports (aka
snoring on the couch), thrifting at the local goodwill, playing cards,
eating sweets, and traveling to visit his friends and family. Jack never
knew a stranger and could strike up a conversation with anyone.
Mr. Phillips was preceded in death by his wife, JoAllen Rogers, an infant
son, Jay, and both of his parents. He is survived by his three children
Leigh (and Robert) Radmacher of Pleasant Hill, Missouri, Joanna Cope of
Pensacola, Florida, and John (and Lorie) Phillips of Vestavia Hills,
Alabama; three stepchildren Jennifer Dunn of Murfreesboro, Tennessee, Bobby
(and Bobbie) Dunn of Brown Summit, North Carolina, and Jeff (and Christy)
Dunn of Raleigh, North Carolina; One sister, Florentine “Tine” Liegerot of
Brevard, North Carolina; 8 Grandchildren and 2 nephews.
Visitation with family and friends will be held on Tuesday, May 31, 2022,
from 10:00am until 11:00am at Central Funeral Home in Manchester, TN.
Funeral services will immediately follow. Burial will take place at
Hillsboro United Methodist Church Cemetery.