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Dorothy Jean Carlton Phillips

After a long and joy-filled life, Dorothy Jean Carlton
Phillips, earned her long awaited angel’s wings on
June 11, 2023 at Advanced Rehab of Vernon, Texas. In
her last earth side moments she was wrapped in love
and surrounded by family. Funeral services will be 10
a.m.,Friday June, 16, 2023 at First Baptist Church of
Chillicothe with graveside following at the Chillicothe
Cemetery. The family will host a visitation Thursday June
15, 2023 6-7 p.m. at Smith Funeral Home in Chillicothe.
Only 3 months after the creation of Mickey Mouse,
Dorothy was born Monday, Feb. 11, 1929 at home in
Big Valley. She was the fourth child to Charlie and Lillie
Carlton. Her parents and older siblings, Charlene Knorpp,
Joyce Matthews, and Jack Carlton preceded her in death. A younger sister, Ann
Calloway, currently of Russellville, Ark. completed the family 4 years after her birth.
Dorothy remembered her childhood as loving and congenial. Her family was poor
but not deprived. Living in a 2 bedroom house with 7 people meant comfort and
trust with one other was necessary. She never bought a new dress, even through high
school. She might have overcorrected later in life 􀂿 lling not only her closet, but the
closets of her daughter and granddaughters. She never traveled far from home as a
child and remembered a special childhood trip to Elmer, Okla. just to have ice cream
so they could say they had been out of the state of Texas. Later in her marriage, she
traveled to several countries and many parts of the world. Her favorite place was
Hawaii where she loved the beach and the culture of the islands.
In 1942, while playing volleyball in the Chillicothe gymnasium, she met Aaron
D (Shorty) Phillips while he tried to play basketball with the other boys. During his
military service, she moved with her family to Amarillo, Texas where she graduated
from Amarillo High School in 1946. In August of that year, he proposed and they
were married a month later on Sept. 11, 1946 at her family home in Amarillo. Due
to the hot day and the crowded room, she fainted during the ceremony and was
pronounced married while laying on the couch. She described her marriage as
loving, fun, and family centered. She always admired the way he took care of her.
She and Shorty welcomed two children, Michael Aaron in 1951 and Gloria
Jean in 1954. In 1959, she helped open Hardeman Grain with Shorty. In the early
years, she 􀂿 lled seed sacks at home with Gloria. As the business grew so did her
responsibilities. She became a 􀂿 rst contact for all customers as she insisted on
answering the phone anytime it rang. She loved her customers and had great pride in
the relationships she built.
Through the years, she served her community and was named Citizen of the
Year by the Lion’s Club for her service. The Texas Grain & Feed organization
also honored her and Shorty as Outstanding Members of the Year. She felt that
building a family business that served the community was one of her greatest
In 2001, Shorty passed and although she “lost her guidepost” she found a way to
carry on. She never stopped loving Shorty and continued working 6 days a week
and long harvest hours until selling her elevator in 2013 and welcoming retirement.
Although years took their toll on her body, she stayed positive and joyful gathering
her family every holiday she could manage.
She took great pride in her children, their spouses, and her grandchildren.
Gloria married James Graham (deceased 2017) in 1973. They had 3 children: Greg
(married to Carrie and father to Alexis, Johnae, and Presley of Amarillo, Texas),
Jason (married to Beatriz and father to Liliana, Jason, and Izabella of Woodward,
Okla.), and Jill (married to Lance James and mother of JR of Corinth, Texas). Mike
married Dianne Sutton in 1975. They had 2 children: Allison (mother to Austin
Aylor of Graham, Texas) and Aaron (married to Amy and father of Abbigale and
Aubrey of Vernon, Texas). She was loved by many nieces and nephews, cousins and
To honor her life, the family asks for donations to the Chillicothe Cemetery.
Dorothy loved Chillicothe with all her heart and, in addition to the Cemetery, was
a long time supporter of Chillicothe Fire Department, Chillicothe Pride, and all of
Chillicothe’s churches.

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