Melba Elizabeth Phillips Snead

Published 9:03 am Monday, October 6, 2014

ABINGDON, Va. — Melba Elizabeth Phillips Snead went to be with the Lord Jesus Thursday, October 2, 2014, at her home in Abingdon, Va., following a courageous battle with cancer.
Elizabeth was born May 15, 1929, in Meadowview, Va. She was preceded in death by her husband of 60 years, Irby Snead, in January 2014; her parents, Dallas Franklin Phillips Sr. and Eulalah Nichols Phillips; her brother, Robert L. Phillips Sr.; and two nephews, Bryan K. Phillips and Samuel Snead.
An active member of Abingdon Baptist Church, Elizabeth was a member of the Joanna Owens Sunday School class.
Elizabeth is survived by her sisters, Rachel Baker and husband Richard, Blountville, Tenn., and Beulah Blankenship, Goldsboro, N.C.; brother, Dallas F. Phillips Jr. and wife Ann, Abingdon, Va.; nephews, Sam Snead and wife Rebecca, Bristol, Va., Robert L. Phillips Jr. and wife Kellie, Abingdon, Va., and Steven M. Phillips and wife Sharon, Bristol, Va.; nieces, Rita Phillips, Hillsville, Va., Lisa Cullipher and husband Billy, Pikeville, N.C., Connie Reed, Abingdon, Va., and Sharon Phillips, Bristol, Va.; great-nephews, Robert L. Phillips III “Robbie” and wife Leanne, Bristol, Va., Cameron A. Phillips, Abingdon, Va., and Robbie Cline of South Dakota; great-nieces, Meghan Snead Shaffer and husband Scott, Bristol, Tenn., Renee Thompson, Goldsboro, N.C., Tiffany Cousins, Meadowview, Va., and Julia and Diane Cullipher, Pikeville, N.C.; and several great-great-nephews and nieces.
Elizabeth graduated as valedictorian of her class at Meadowview High School. She went on to graduate from Bristol College and also attended Virginia Highlands Community College and East Tennessee State University. In 1985, Bristol College initiated an annual full tuition secretarial scholarship in honor of Elizabeth.
In 1948, Elizabeth went to work for John C. Paty Jr. at Paty Lumber Company in Bristol, and continued in faithful and loyal employment with the company for 63 years, serving most recently as corporate secretary and operations manager of the corporate office as well as administrative assistant to Mr. Paty.
After Paty Lumber Company was sold, Elizabeth continued her work as corporate secretary and treasurer for Aviation Strategies Group and Strategic Resources Group, Blountville, Tenn., until her death.
Elizabeth was a beloved member of the International Association of Administrative Professionals for 50 years and was instrumental in establishing the Tri-Cities Chapter, eventually serving as president and treasurer. She earned the Certified Professional Secretary rating from the IAAP Institute. In 1975 she was selected Tri-Cities Chapter Secretary of the Year and in 2002 was named Outstanding Member of the Year. She served as Tennessee Division Treasurer for four years.
Elizabeth served on the Citizen Advisory Board of Virginia Highlands Community College, was active in the Bristol YWCA from 1948, eventually serving on the board of directors, and was an active member of the Quota Club.
Elizabeth was a vibrant associate of the Old Dominion Investment Club, the Abingdon Business and Professional Women, where she served as treasurer, the Abingdon Garden Club and the Glenrochie Ladies Golf Association of Glenrochie Country Club.
Her love of horticulture was evident in her beautiful gardens and delicious fruits and vegetables. Her skills developed further as a participant in the Master Gardener Program of Virginia Cooperative Extension.
As president of the Phillips Clan Society, Elizabeth planned, prepared and presided over the Phillips family reunion every year in Purlear, N.C. Also, as valedictorian of her high school class, she kept in contact with former classmates and each year organized the annual school reunion.
Elizabeth walked by the Holy Spirit and shed abroad His love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control, touching every life with His grace. Devoted wife, loving sister, adoring aunt, caring cousin, kind neighbor, loyal employee, compassionate co-worker and faithful, generous friend, Elizabeth lived a joy-filled life of service to others. She always put others first and greeted everyone with her effervescent smile. She is greatly missed by all who love her.
The family wishes to express sincere appreciation to Glenrochie Ladies Golf Association, the Abingdon Garden Club, and special caregivers Diane Berry and Samantha Ward for their loving care.
Visitation of friends will be Sunday, October 5, from 1:30 to 3 p.m. with the funeral service at 3 p.m. at Frost Funeral Home & Cremation Services with Pastor Jerry A. Eggers and John E. Seward Jr. officiating. The committal service and interment will follow at Knollkreg Memorial Park, Abingdon, Va. Pallbearers are Sam Snead, Robert L. Phillips Jr., Cameron Phillips, Robert L. Phillips III “Robbie,” Steven M. Phillips and John Evans Seward III. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Elizabeth Snead Memorial Scholarship Fund, c/o Robert L Phillips Jr., 25405 Hillman Highway, Abingdon, VA 24210. Online condolences may be expressed to the family at
Frost Funeral Home & Cremation Services, 250 East Main Street, Abingdon, Va., is honored to serve the family of Mrs. Snead.