Benjamin ‘Ben’ Phillips, 89
Wed, 07/22/2020 - 11:27am admin
May 20, 1931 —
July 15, 2020
RURAL HARMONY - Benjamin (Ben) James Phillips, age 89, of rural Harmony, Minn., passed away peacefully on Wednesday, July 15, 2020 at his home.
A private family Mass of Christian Burial will be held at the Notre Dame Catholic Church in Cresco, Iowa with Fr. Jacob Rouse officiating. Burial will be in Calvary Cemetery, Cresco. Public visitation will take place on Wednesday, July 22, 2020, from 5-7 p.m. at Hindt-Hudek Funeral Home in Cresco. Due to COVID-19 restrictions, masks are required, and social distancing will be practiced.
Ben was born on May 20, 1931 to James and Mary (Snyder) Phillips in Spillville, Iowa. He graduated from Cresco High School in 1950. In 1952 he was drafted into the United States Marines, doing his basic training in San Diego, Calif. He then spent the next 15 months in Korea, holding various communication positions. Cpl. Phillips was honorably discharged on Feb. 12, 1954. He was the recipient of a National Defense Service medal and a United National Service medal.
On Jan. 2, 1956, Ben was united in marriage to Geraldine Neubauer, “the love of his life,” in Rochester, Minn. They started their life together with a small farm in rural Cresco. In 1965 they moved to “his favorite place on this earth,” his beloved farm near Granger. It was that year he received an award for “Outstanding Young Farmer” in Howard County. He remained actively involved in farming his entire life. The love for his farm and the land only took second place to the love for his family.
Ben was a friend to all and will be remembered for his big smile and genuine kindness. He enjoyed family gatherings, helping his Amish neighbors, visiting with friends, playing cards and John Deere tractors. He was a member of Notre Dame Catholic Church, Cresco American Legion #135 and VFW Post #4561. He also served on the Granger Creamery Board for 30-plus years.
Ben is survived by his wife, Geraldine; his four children, Betty Ehler of Canton, Minn., Bob (Susan) Phillips of rural Harmony, Sandy (Roger) Marzolf of Preston, Minn. and Chuck (Ellen) Phillips of Faribault, Minn.; 12 grandchildren; 22 great-grandchildren; brother, Barton (Janice) Phillips; brother-in-law, Lloyd Neubauer; and several nieces and nephews and countless friends.
He is preceded in death by his parents; a great-grandson, Carter Loren Phillips; sister, Beatrice (Joe) Kruse; brothers, Bernerd Phillips; and brothers-in-law, Virgil (Berneita) Neubauer and Joe (Ann) Neubauer.