Phyllis Darlene Douglas, a beloved member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, passed away peacefully in her home in Springville at the age of 76. She fought a courageous 30-year battle with Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia, demonstrating unwavering strength and faith throughout her journey. Phyllis was born on Sunday, December 8, 1946, in Nyssa, Oregon, as the first child of Randolph Samuel Cooper and Lucille Mae Calvert.
As a child, Phyllis grew up in various locations across the Pacific Northwest, including Washington, Oregon, and Northern California. She exemplified a strong work ethic from a young age, excelling academically throughout her childhood. In high school, Phyllis emerged as a champion debater and played an active role in student government. She graduated from Franklin High School in Portland, Oregon, where she was known for her remarkable accomplishments. Phyllis chaired a student committee and was voted “Most Likely to Succeed” by her peers.
A social butterfly by nature, Phyllis had an extraordinary ability to connect with others. She possessed a deep love for dancing and music, often organizing weekend dance parties that brought joy to those around her. With her beautiful singing voice, she frequently graced important life events of family and friends with her melodious tones.
Phyllis’ dedication to her education and exceptional grades earned her a coveted spot at Brigham Young University. During her time at BYU, she formed lifelong friendships, sang in a rock band, and had a fateful encounter with her soulmate, Ronald Max Douglas, in an acting class in 1967. Phyllis and Ron were united in marriage and sealed for time and all eternity in the Los Angeles temple of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints on December 30, 1967.
After Ron’s graduation from BYU in May 1968, the couple settled in South Pasadena, California, and subsequently lived in Baldwin Park and Anaheim for the next 15 years. During this time, they welcomed four of their five children into the world: Michael Ronald (1968), Tamara Michelle (1970), Samantha Randi (1974), and Matthew Ronald (1976). Phyllis, a woman of ambition and entrepreneurship, began a Tupperware sales business in 1971. Over the years, she diligently built her business into a successful unit known as “The Funny Faces,” eventually expanding into a wholesale distributorship that brought her and Ron back to Provo, Utah.
Phyllis wholeheartedly served in various capacities within The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, but her most notable service spanned over two decades with the Young Women organization. Even years later, women who had been influenced by Phyllis’ stalwart example, positive attitude, and keen sense of humor during their formative years sought her out to express their love and appreciation. Following the sale of their Tupperware distributorship, Phyllis pursued her passion for gardening and attained the title of Master Gardener from USU. She possessed a remarkable green thumb and could make any plant flourish. Phyllis served as the nursery manager at Ernst, Anderson Lumber, and Stock Building Supply, where her expertise and dedication shone.
In her later years, Phyllis dedicated her time and efforts to family history. Over the course of 15 years, she painstakingly submitted tens of thousands of names for ordinance work to be completed in temples of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Her commitment to preserving and honoring her family’s heritage was unparalleled.
Phyllis was renowned for her open-door policy. Anyone who crossed her threshold was greeted warmly and encouraged to help themselves to snacks from the pantry and candy drawer. Throughout the years, family and friends found solace in her hospitality, always welcome to stay for a night or more.
Phyllis is preceded in death by her father, Randolph Cooper, her mother, Lucille Calvert, and her daughter, Tammy Daybell. She is survived by her devoted husband, Ronald Douglas, and their five children: Michael and Kiffon Douglas (Provo, UT), Samantha and Jason Gwilliam (Springville, UT), Matthew and Cherylyn Douglas (Springville, UT), and Benjamin and Kelsie Douglas (Springville, UT). Her legacy lives on through her 28 cherished grandchildren: Aleigh Morelli, Matthew (Heather) Cordner, David (Tiffany) Collette, Brooke (Carl) Unti, Jessica Hall, Adam (Erica) Johnson, Christopher (Francesca) Douglas, Garth (Kaira) Daybell, Emma (Joe) Murray, Seth (Makayla) Daybell, Leah (Adam) Murphy, Mark Daybell, Andrew (Kallie) Gwilliam, Spencer Gwilliam, Wendy Gwilliam, Colin Gwilliam, Megan Gwilliam, Danica Gwilliam, Max Douglas, Gavyn Douglas, Ethan Douglas, Aeryn Douglas, Liam Douglas, Logan Douglas, Callum Douglas, Erik Douglas, Lucy Douglas, and Calvin Douglas. Additionally, she leaves behind 23 great-grandchildren who brought immense joy to her life.
Phyllis is also survived by her younger siblings: Barbara (Jack) Doxey, Vicki (Jim) Hoban, and Sam (Jaide) Cooper, who hold cherished memories of their shared experiences.
Funeral Services will be held at the Spring Creek 9th East Chapel (860 E 200 N, UT 84663) at 11:00 a.m. on Thursday, June 22, 2023. Prior to the services, a viewing will take place from 9:30 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. Following the services, Phyllis will be laid to rest at Evergreen Cemetery. For those unable to attend in person, a livestream option will be available.
In honor of Phyllis’s life and her dedication to others, the family kindly requests that, instead of flowers, donations be made to the Tammy Douglas Daybell Foundation. The foundation stands as a testament to Phyllis’s enduring love and commitment to her family, extending support and care to those in need.
Services arranged by Spring Creek Mortuary of Springville, Utah.