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Thomas Edward Phillips

Thomas Edward Phillips, age 73, of Erwin, passed away on Wednesday, August 17, 2022 at Franklin Woods Community Hospital in Johnson City. A native of Erwin, Tommy is a son of the late William Edward, Phillips, Jr. and Dorothy Mae (Norris) Phillips.   He was a graduate of Unicoi County High School and East Tennessee State University and was previously employed by Clinchfield Railroad and Suffolk Seaboard Coastline Railroad.  Tommy was a teacher at Unicoi County High School. As well as a Football Coach and a lifelong friend to many of his students.  Most recently, he was the Construction Manager for Habitat for Humanity in the Tri-Cities area and also built many houses on his own as a Contractor.

Tommy loved sports and was an avid UT Vols fan.  He also enjoyed fishing and beach music and he loved to Shag dance.  He was a hard worker and was very productive in building trades, which he handed down to his students and his son, Thomas Lawton Phillips.  His family was his pride and joy and he maintained close relationships with many of them.  His smile was always present. Even when his health declined, Tommy’s faith was strong and he held firmly to God’s word.  He will be greatly missed and his legacy will be carried out by many of the people he inspired and motivated during his earthly walk.  In addition to his parents, Tommy is preceded in death by his grandparents, William Edward Phillips, Sr. and Julia Phillips, as well as several aunts, uncles, nieces, nephews and cousins.

Thomas Edward Phillips has left behind to cherish his memory: son, Thomas Lawton Phillips; sister, Delores Phillips Shell; nephew and niece, Bill and Haley Jones and their children, Harper and Anna Rae; and many other family members.

The family respectfully requests the honor of your presence as we offer tribute and remember the life of Thomas Edward Phillips in a celebration of his life to begin at 6:00 pm on Tuesday, August 30, 2022 in the chapel at Valley Funeral Home.  Honorary pallbearers will be Michael Phillips, Sonny Crowder, Charles Harrison, Allen Rogers, Bill Jones and Butch Bundy.

Condolences and memories may be shared with the family and viewed at: or on  http://Facebook at These arrangements are made especially for the family and friends of Thomas Edward Phillips through Valley Funeral Home, 1085 N. Main Ave., Erwin, 423-743-9187.