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Sylvester J. “Syl” Phillips, age 89 of Durand, died Monday, May 3, 2021 at the Heritage of Elmwood Nursing Home in Elmwood with his family by his side.

Syl was born on November 16, 1931 to Guy and Lily (Smith) Phillips in the Town of Eau Galle. He attended school in Eau Galle, Weber Valley School and Elmwood High School. After school, Syl joined the U.S. Army and served as a cook. He was honorably discharged in 1953. Syl married nora Ellis, together they had one daughter, Linda, and later divorced. Syl then married the love of his life, Phyllis Rode in June of 1976. He worked for Roberts Farm House Foods in Eau Claire for 27 years. Syl later managed the warehouse at Cenex in Mondovi, retiring in 1996. They lived in Elk Mound for 15 years before returning to Durand in 1990.

Syl is survived by his wife of 45 years, Phyllis; daughter, Linda Phillips of Eau Claire; step-children, Jim (Jean) Thompson of Menomonie, Al (Jackie) Klein of Clinton, Jeff (Brenda) Klein of Harvard, IL, Jon Rode of Menomonie and Nancy Brenner of Eau Claire; nine grandchildren, 20 great grandchildren, nieces, nephews, other relatives and friends. He is preceded in death by his parents and sisters, Marjorie (Ted) Wangen, Fern (Dale) Trainor, Virginia (Bernard) Johnson and Ruth Phillips.

Funeral Services will be 11:00AM Friday, May 7, 2021 at the Durand United Methodist Church in Durand. Rev. Grace Baldridge will officiate. Burial will be in the Maxville Cemetery. Visitation will be from 10:00AM until the time of services at the church on Friday.

Rhiel Funeral Home & Cremation Services, Durand, is serving the family.

Condolences may be made online at

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