Obituary for Richard C. Phillips
February 22, 1940 – August 20, 2021
Richard C. Phillips (Dick) went home to Jesus on August 20, 2021. He was born in Long Beach, California on February 22, 1940. He is survived by his brother, Bob Phillips and his wife Nancy; his two children – his son, Craig A. Phillips and his wife Tiffany, along with their two boys, Josh Phillips and his wife Kristine and great-grandson Jackson, Drew Phillips and his wife Alyssa and great-granddaughter Rylie; and his daughter Cindy Phillips, her daughter Ashly and great-grandson Jordan.
His wife of 45 years, Judy Phillips, died in June of 2018.
Dick had a rich and exciting life. Right out of high school he went on active duty with the United States Coast Guard, stationed in port security in the LA harbor, ocean station November, and in Honolulu, Hawaii. After completing six months of active duty, he attended Long Beach City College and worked nights at the Southern California Military Academy as a barrack officer. In 1960, he went to work full time for the Cessna aircraft distributor in shipping and receiving. By 1963, he was managing the parts division and was learning to fly. In 1967, he went to work for ATCO, the Piper distributor, and managed its parts distribution division, eventually becoming its CEO. ATCO had the Piper aircraft distribution division, aircraft parts distribution, a sports boat distribution division, commercial aircraft tooling division and high-pressure hose manufacturing division. Dick served as the president of the Aviation Distributors and Manufacturers Association, a trade association made up of most of the distributors and manufacturers of aviation parts in the US. In 1982, he oversaw the sale of ATCO’s assets to a Canadian conglomerate.
In 1983, he bought into a small aircraft parts manufacturing company called Skytronics, located in El Segundo, California. By 1985, he had bought the original owner out and was expanding the company’s product line and service capabilities. The company was a Boeing supplier as well as a supplier of services and products to the world’s airlines flying Boeing airplanes. Dick was the primary salesperson for the company and as such, traveled all over the world visiting the world’s airlines. Dick sold the company to his son in 2006.
In 1985, Dick completed his Bachelor of Science degree at California Baptist University and enrolled in Pepperdine’s Master’s program, graduating in 1987. In 1988, he began teaching as an adjunct professor at Cal Baptist in their business division’s night program for adults going back to school. He also taught at Biola and Pepperdine, and continued teaching to 2003. He started a program bringing students to Oxford during the summer months to study international business. He served as trustee at Cal Baptist and was chair of their Board of Visitors. He received the Distinguished Alumnus award from Pepperdine and an honorary Doctorate from Cal Baptist.
Dick and Judy traveled throughout the world – England, France, Germany, Switzerland, Austria, Russia, Netherlands, Italy, Egypt, Israel, China, and Japan – to mention just a few. Dick enjoyed tennis, golf, and hiking. Dick and Judy moved to Nevada County in 2004. They attended Twin Cities Church, where Dick grew in his faith and love for God. He will be remembered for his wisdom, humble service, and amazing generosity.
A celebration of Life will be held at Twin Cities Church in Grass Valley on September 13, 2021, at 2:00 pm.
“A great big thank you for all of my friends and family who made this trip spectacular. You have been tangible evidence of God’s kindness in my life. Love you.” – Dick
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