Phyllis Marguerite Cornell went to be with the Lord on May 7, 2017b after a brave battle with Huntington’s Disease and CVA.
Phyllis was born January 28, 1940, in Fairhaven, Massachusetts. She moved to Billings in 1955 and graduated from Billings Central in 1957. She immediately went to study with the Sisters of Charity in Leavenworth, Kansas, and was a part of the convent program for five years. Her teaching career started under their commission and continued on after she left. Phyllis, a student favorite, taught 15 years in the Catholic Schools and 25 years in the Billings Public Schools. She achieved an undergraduate degree and masters + 45 in Education from EMC.
Phyllis enjoyed collecting dolls, a trait shared with her mother. She was an active member of the Big Sky Dollers and Doll Dreamers for several years. Her house was filled with displays of beautiful dolls. She had a love for the creative arts and was a big supporter of performing arts in her family and the community. She liked to travel, especially to visit family and adored the summers she spent by the seashore in Massachusetts.
Phyllis was preceded in death by her parents, George Dempsey Cornell and Pearl June Cornell. She is survived by her longstanding friend, Enid Stube; her pseudo daughter, Barbara Stube-Mercado; her siblings, Bill Cornell Sr. and Rosemarie Perry; her nephew, Bill Cornell Jr.; and her nieces, Nicole Pond and KeriAnn Gracia.
Special thanks to the caregivers and staff at The Springs who became like family over the last couple years. Also, love and gratitude to Nancy Shapard, who adopted Phyllis’s beloved dog, Sugar, and allowed us to bring her for weekly visits to see Phyllis.
A memorial service for Phyllis will take place at Michelotti-Sawyers Mortuary, 1001 Alderson Ave., on Thursday, May 11, at 2 p.m., with visitation from noon to 2 p.m. Then she will be transported to Riverside Cemetery in Fairhaven, Massachusetts, to be laid to rest next to her parents and grandparents.