Phyllis Barbara Sherman, age 87, passed away on Jan. 7, 2020, with her husband of 64 years at her side. She was surrounded by family for her entire life, as well as during her brief hospitalization after suffering a stroke.
Phyllis was born in 1932 in Coupeville, Wash., to Danish immigrants Peter and Barbara Sloth. She joined three sisters, Viola, Agnes and Opal.
Phyllis graduated from Coupeville High School in 1950 and attended the University of Puget Sound. She worked as an office assistant for Dr. Chafee in Coupeville, carefully saving her money for furniture.
She married Alvin Sherman on March 11, 1955 at the Coupeville Methodist Church. They made their first home next to Sunnyside Cemetery in the house that is now the Trust Board for Ebey’s Landing National Historical Reserve office. Soon, they moved to their Ebey’s Prairie home on the family farm. She immediately began putting her talents to work making this the beautiful family home where she would spend her life welcoming and caring for friends and family from near and far.
Phyllis and Al had four daughters, Krista, Karen, Karla and Alice. She was a lifelong caregiver and companion, helping on the family farm, keeping a beautiful home and garden as well as spending many hours at church singing, serving and sewing. She was a living example of “loving one another.”
Phyllis and her sisters all married local farmers and stayed in the community. In the 1950s, she and her sisters purchased a small beachfront property on Kennedy’s lagoon. Every summer, they spent Sunday afternoons there after attending church, swimming and enjoying wonderful homemade food that they mostly grew themselves. Family members still enjoy special times at the lagoon.
In their retirement years, Phyllis and Al enjoyed traveling with their children and visiting grandchildren. Through the years Phyllis kept in close contact with her Danish cousins. She felt fortunate to travel to Denmark with her mother and later with her niece, Val Arnold, and her immediate family, keeping the Danish family ties alive. She and Al hosted numerous Danish cousins over the years, as well as foreign exchange students who worked on the farm. On their trips Phyllis was never far from her phone. She was a good listener and a compassionate friend; always looking after people, “loving one another” in every way. Phyllis was a special Mormor (Danish for mother’s mother). She and “Bapa” enjoyed spending time with their nine grandchildren, all of whom grew up in Western Washington, and two great-grandchildren. They attended numerous events, hosted sleepovers, played games and made incredible birthday cakes. Holidays at Mormor and Bapa’s house were warm and special. We will hold her warmth and generosity close in our hearts as we remember her always. “And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.” 1 Corinthians 13:13.
She is survived by her faithful husband, Alvin Sherman, of Coupeville; daughters, Krista Seely (John), of Bainbridge Island; Karen Bishop (Wilbur), Coupeville; Karla Vier (Tom Addison), Coupeville; and Alice Hansen (Brandon), Mount Vernon; grandchildren, Clark Bishop (Danielle), Coupeville, Alicen Bishop Liebers (Sean), Anchorage, Alaska, Barbara Seely Moser (Joe), Indianapolis, Ind., Michael Vier, Boise, Idaho, Sam Vier, Denver, Colo., Eric Seely, Olympia, Wash., and Brandon Andrew Hansen, Dane Hansen and Anna Hansen, Mount Vernon, Wash.; great-grandchildren, Gwen Moser and Luke Moser, of Indianapolis. She is also survived by numerous relatives, both here and in her parents’ home country of Denmark.
A Celebration of Life will be held at noon on Feb. 8, 2020 at the Coupeville United Methodist Church. Memorials may be made to the Coupeville United Methodist Church online at www.coupevilleumc.com, by phone at 360-678-4256; or to the Friends of the Ebey’s Landing National Historical Reserve online at www.friendsofebeys.org/donate.html, or send a check or money order to: Friends of Ebey’s, PO Box 958, Coupeville, WA 98239.
Arrangements were entrusted to Wallin Funeral Home, Oak Harbor, Wash. Please visit Phyllis’ page in our Book of Memories online at www.wallinfuneralhome.com to share memories and leave condolences.