Ottis Phillips Obituary Death – COOKEVILLE, Tenn. – Tennessee Tech Athletics, especially Golden Eagle football, meant the world to Ottis Phillips. After all, he was a four-year letterwinner for head coach Don Wade from 1969 to 1972, helping Tech football earn the Ohio Valley Conference championship in 1972 and a berth in the Grantland Rice Bowl.
After those years, Phillips became a successful businessman, civic leader and a tremendous friend to Tennessee Tech Athletics, even working with the program’s efforts to overhaul Tucker Stadium and create the Football Operations Center on campus. This past November, he was inducted into the Tech Sports Hall of Fame. Phillips, 71, passed away suddenly on Tuesday, leaving the Tech Department of Athletics mourning one of its closest friends and supporters.
A celebration of Phillips’ life will be held at 1 p.m. Friday at Cumberland First Presbyterian Church on 10th Street in Cookeville, officiated by Dr. Charles McCaskey and Rev. Christian Smith. The family will receive friends that morning at 10 a.m. until the service begins. Phillips is survived by his wife of 42 years, Cindy Gray Phillips; daughters, Kristie Phillips, Mary Beth (Blake) Herron, and Emily Phillips Rains all of Cookeville; sons, Parker (Shannon) Phillips of Brentwood and Hunter (Dallas) Phillips of Nashville; sister, Pat Doughty of Cookeville; grandchildren, Caden Herron, Leigha Herron, Jack Rains, Lyndon Katherine Rains, Reagan Phillips and Emerson Phillips.
In addition to his parents – Ottis Hansel Phillips Sr. and Pauline Valentine Clark Phillips – he is preceded in death by his son-in-law, Steve Rains; and brother, Mike Doughty. Serving as honorary pallbearers will be the Cookeville Cavalier 1965-68 football teams and the Tennessee Tech Golden Eagle 1969-72 football teams. In lieu of flowers, gifts may be made to the Tennessee Tech Football Operations Center.
TTU Box 5057, Cookeville, Tenn., 38505 or to the Rains Foundation, P.O. Box 127, Cookeville, Tenn., 38503. Cookeville has always been an important place for Phillips – after all, it was home. Growing up in the community, he graduated from Putnam County Senior High School in 1969 and joined the Golden Eagle football team as a walk-on.