William (Bill) H. Phillips, III
1944 – 2016
It is with great sadness that we report the death of member William (Bill) Phillips. Bill passed away on December 31 at age 72 after a short illness. Bill was an investment consultant, a church leader, and a neighborhood activist. He also had considerable experience in politics as a Capitol Hill staffer, a fundraiser, and campaign manager. An avid rail buff, Bill was a familiar face as a steward on the Dover Harbor and regularly volunteered as a server for the yearly Chef’s Table event. Recently, he had been acting as a neighborhood liaison with CSX during the construction of the Virginia Avenue Tunnel replacement, which is adjacent to the Garfield Park neighborhood where he lived. Bill and his wife, Monica, enjoyed a cross country rail trip just this past October that included dinner on board the Coast Starlight as the sun set over the Pacific. Bill was skilled in woodworking and kept Dover Harbor’s wood trim expertly polished. He is survived by his wife, Monica Sullivan, two children, several grandchildren, nieces, and nephews, and a sister. His complete obituary appeared in the Washington Post on Wednesday, January 4.
Bill will be greatly missed. He was a consummate Porter. Always there when a passenger needed something with a big smile, and attentive, but quiet and not obtrusive. He is one of the few people in DCNRHS who could run the entire lounge of the Dover Harbor (24 passengers) by himself. As Chapter member and fellow crew member Jim Lilly put it "He was a model member, a model porter, an all around gentleman, and just a joy to work with. I am crushed at his loss." That would seem to sum it up nicely.
Bill was buried on January 6, in Beltsville, MD, with a heavyweight Pullman pin in his label. The picture shows Bill working in the lounge of Dover Harbor on July 4, 2015. Photo by J. Lilly