Anne Essex Phillips passed on Wednesday, May 3rd, 2023, at the age of 85. She joins her husband Robert (Bob) Phillips, whom we recently lost in March. She leaves behind 2 siblings, Betty Derwent and Dick Essex, 4 children, Bryan Phillips (Joan), Steve Phillips, (Vanessa Platek) Susan Varga (Doug), Jenny Phillips (Jeff Cook), as well as 5 grandchildren, Nick Varga (Lyndsay), Kaitlyn Huhn (Mike), Derek Varga (Brooke), Ryan Phillips, and Addie Cook, and one great grandchild, Mitchell Varga.
Anne was born on September 5, 1937, in Washington DC. She grew up literally next door to the University of Maryland and was a devoted lifelong Terps fan, along with her other favorite local teams, the Commanders, the Orioles, and the Capitals! She attended Northwestern High School, where she was quite the athlete and played basketball. Not too long after graduating, she met Bob who was attending the University of Maryland. Their 65-year marriage started in 1958 and thus began her affinity and talent for nurturing her family and those she loved. Their new family quickly grew when they welcomed their first son, Bryan, while Anne worked and Bob finished his degree.
The growing family moved to Bowie in the early 60s, where they would remain for the rest of her life. As the family continued to expand with the additions of Steve, Susan, and later Jenny, Anne was able to stay home. She and Bob made a great team. She was a true homebody and found great joy in managing the children and the house, allowing Bob the time to work hard and play hard on his many adventures. She was amazing at keeping everyone organized and on time for the many activities the children participated in, despite never obtaining her driver’s license. Our family attributes these talents at least in part to the fact that Anne grew up as the next to youngest in a busy family of 12 children, herself. In between supporting and attending the kids' soccer games and other sporting events and activities, Anne maintained her own athletic pursuits as an active participant in local bowling and volleyball leagues. She was also very involved with volunteering for her children's' schools and activities. In fact, she continued to support the kindergarten class at Yorktown Elementary long after her children had moved on from the school. Volunteering was only one way that Anne demonstrated her kind and giving nature. She was a beloved friend and neighbor to many and supported an amazing number of charities and social causes, giving generously of her time, talents, and support for the rest of her life.
Even with all of her generosity to others, Anne's heart truly belonged to her children, grandchildren, and her great grandson. Nothing brought her more joy than being Mom, except perhaps when she became Mom Mom. The list of Anne's talents is long, but a particular highlight was her skill in sewing, crafting, and making beautiful things. Her children, grandchildren, and great-grandson all continue to treasure Mom Mom's handmade gifts that were put together with so much of her love. She cherished the time spent with her grandchildren/great grandson and they all were engulfed by her love and attention. Anne and Bob's house in Bowie became the central meeting point for family gatherings due to her natural ability to create a warm and loving home. Many holidays, birthdays, Thanksgiving meals and crab feasts were enjoyed on the porch overlooking the beautiful backyard full of birds, groundhogs, deer, and fox. True to her nature, the animals were always as well-fed and well-loved as the family.
Anne was never big on traveling. In fact, she loved her quiet time, which is not surprising since she grew up a houseful of busy, noisy children. She was a voracious reader and if she wasn’t reading, she could be spotted walking in the neighborhood for exercise.
Anne/Mom/Mom Mom meant the world to many and is already so missed. Plans will be made to celebrate her memory and her life at a future date and will be shared once available. As noted earlier, Anne had a very generous heart and loved to provide charitable donations to many causes that were dear to her. In lieu of flowers, nothing would make her more happy than a charitable donation made to a valued organization of your choice in her memory.