- Fri Jan 22, 2010 6:20 pm
A celebration of Chris Phillips' life and legacy will be held on January 23, 2010 at 5:30 pm at Fishing Tackle Unlimited in Houston (12800 Gulf Frwy @ Fuqua).
The Texas and Louisiana Gulf Coast communities are deeply saddened by the passing of Capt. Christopher T. Phillips. Phillips was born in Port Arthur, TX on August 17, 1947 to Charles and Helen Phillips. He was a graduate of Thomas Jefferson High School and proudly attended Louisiana State University in Baton Rouge, LA. He resided in the Houston-Galveston area for the remainder of his life, first working as a home builder and then as a professional fly fishing guide. Throughout his guiding career, Phillips could be found working three days of every week in one of the local fly shops. Angler's Edge, Westbank Anglers, and Fishing Tackle Unlimited -- where he ran the fly department -- all benefitted from his expertise. Through his guiding and fly shop work, Phillips introduced hundreds upon hundreds of anglers to his love of salt water fly fishing. In fact, Phillips often is credited as being one of the first, if not the first, to popularize salt water fly fishing in Texas. Phillips fell in love with salt water fly fishing in the early `70s when he started going to the Florida Keys to chase tarpon. It was there that he learned his skills alongside such fly fishing and light tackle pioneers as Flip Pallot, Jimmy Albright and big tarpon guru, Billy Pate. "All I did was learn from the best and bring it home," Phillips once said of his exploits. As the first President of the Texas Fly Fishers, a Houston chapter of the Federation of Fly Fishers, Phillips freely shared what he learned and told countless stories that fueled the passions of many soon-to-be salt water fly fishermen. He often credited his affiliation with that group as a driving influence in his decision to become a professional fly fishing guide.
Phillips lost his battle with cancer on January 7, 2010. He was in the company of family and a great number of friends who faithfully sat by his bedside in his final days. Phillips is survived by his loving girlfriend and devoted caregiver, Iva Doyle, of Hitchcock, TX, his brother Thomas and wife Patricia, of Orange, TX, his brother, Timothy and wife Kathleen, of Groves, TX, his nephew, Capt. Christopher Phillips of Vidor, TX, nieces Marissa Stiles and Lindsey Phillips, great niece Kendall Socia, and nephews Merritt Stiles and Mason Christopher Lakey. The family and Ms. Doyle extend their sincere thanks and appreciation to his many close friends who never left his side, and to all of the wonderful doctors, nurses, and staff at MD Anderson Cancer Center and The University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston.