On Oct. 18, 2019, Betty Lee Phillips Savage, beloved mother, grandmother, great-grandmother, aunt, cousin, friend and teacher, passed away peacefully at age 97 with her daughter and granddaughter by her side.
Betty was born Feb. 5, 1922 to Esther Krause Phillips and Thomas W Phillips. She, along with older sister Barbara, younger sister Jacqueline, and baby brother Hayden, were raised in Everett Wash. during the Depression. She graduated from Everett High School in 1940 and married a naval pilot, Theodore Savage, in June 1944. A son, Robert (Skip) was born in 1947 and a daughter, Colleen, in 1958. Betty worked at Frederick & Nelson for many years, was a PTA president, 4-H leader, avid gardener and the world’s best apple pie baker. Seriously great pie.
She was secretly horrified (but mostly proud) by her children’s choices of sporting activities. Hydroplane racing for Skip and horse shows for Colleen. She attended every boat race and every horse show, enthusiastically cheering her kids on.
Betty returned to college in her 50s and obtained her teaching degree in early childhood education. She and Ted built their dream retirement home on a beach near Dugualla Bay, Whidbey Island, Wash., where they spent many happy years entertaining friends and family. They moved to North Everett in 1990 and, after Ted’s passing in 2002, Betty got really busy traveling, taking writing classes at the community college and improving her computer skills. At age 80 she began studying Tai Chi at the Everett Senior Center where she met her good friend, John Schultz. John introduced her to an amazing new world of music, art and literature. At age 82 she toured Ireland. At 85, she visited Nepal and China and was able to walk on the Great Wall. Finally, slowing down a little, she made the brave choice to sell her lovely home in Everett and move to Vashon Island to be near Colleen, and her husband, Frank. She lived at Vashon Community Care Assisted Living for the past three years, where, at 96, she was elected president for the residents committee!
Betty was a gracious and beautiful lady who will be remembered for her great intellect, kindness and complete inability to tell a joke.
She was preceded in death by her husband, Ted; parents, Thomas and Esther Phillips; sisters, Barbara Cushman (Fran) and Jacqueline Abbott (Charlie); and brother, Thomas Hayden Phillips (MaryJo).
She is survived and will be terribly missed by her beloved children, son, Robert (Chona) Savage, of Tagaytay, Philippines; daughter, Colleen (Frank) Zellerhoff, of Vashon Island; granddaughter, Jennifer (Marq) Savage Dean, of Whidbey Island and grandson, Christopher (Pauline) Savage, of Seattle, with their mother, Jocelyn Batdorf, great grandsons, Griffin Savage Dean and Sebastian Savage, and grand dog, Schotzi. She leaves many friends, cousins, nieces, nephews and especially, dear friend John Schultz and his furry canine companion, Buddy.
A celebration of her life will be held at noon Friday, Nov. 22 at Evergreen Funeral Home. A reception will follow from 1-3 p.m. at the same location.