James H. Phillips Jr. (also known as Uncle Jim, Junior, Pancho or Pop) passed away peacefully surrounded by his family at his home on September 4, 2019. He was born on the Shinnecock Indian Reservation on October 4, 1925 and was 93 years old.
A lifelong resident of the reservation, he was the son of the late
James and Alice (Thompson) Phillips members of the Poosepatuck and Shinnecock Tribes respectively. James had always been a working man starting with a job at Enstein's doing errands as a young boy. During World War II he served with the U.S. Army as a Quartermaster assigned to posts in Germany, France and the Philippines.
James also worked for the Town of Southampton Highway Department from which he retired after 32 years. He also worked for the late Herb McCarthy at the Bowden Square for 18 years and at the Shinnecock Golf Course as a Yardman alongside Tribal Member and the late Peter Smith Sr., who was also Head Groundskeeper at the time. At the time of his death he continued to hold the postion of Surgeon for the Dunes Post VFW 7009 in Southampton and was a lifetime member being one of the original post members.
He served as an Elder of the Shinnecock Presbyterian Church and played on the Shinnecock Bowling League.
James ran the original soda stand at the annual Shinnecock Powwow with his best friends Raymond and Reginald (Poochie) Gardner. He and his wife did a lot of traveling with their friends, family and the Shinnecock Senior Citizen Club.
James J. Phillips Jr. is survived by his wife of 69 years Marion (Wise) Phillips, five (5) children, Linda (Leigh) Franklin, Shelley Moore, James Keith, Tanis (Robert) Robinson and Susan (Jenaro) Soto of the Shinnecock Reservation.
He enjoyed his nine (9) grandchildren, Eric, Micah, Jahnna, Ricky, Janelle, Megan, Ashley, Tiana and Derek. They blessed him with twelve (12) great grandchildren and two (2) great-great grandchildren.
He is also survived by his two sisters, Edith Scott and Phyllis Rich and two brother-in-laws Donald Williams Sr. and Walter Wise Jr.
He also has two (2) godchildren, Nafeesah Abdurashid and Donald Williams Jr. He is predeceased by his sister Tanis Scott.
James' favorite pastime was spending time with his family and enjoying a slow ride around his home, the Shinnecock Nation.
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