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Robert Andrew Phillips

Big Stone Gap, Va./Dandridge, Tn.-Robert Andrew Phillips, age 75, went to be with the Lord on Monday, December 6, 2021, following a brief illness at Fort Sanders hospital in Knoxville, TN. He passed away peacefully with his loving wife and family at his side.
Robert was born on March 27, 1946 in Kingsport, TN. He was one of 8 children, born to the late Paul and Lucille Phillips. He was married to the love of his life, Kathie, for 55 years. They lived in Big Stone Gap, VA until they retired and moved to Dandridge, TN 14 years ago. He was retired from the UMWA, where he worked for over 20 years as a mine inspector. He was also the owner of Robbie’s Market in Big Stone Gap for several years, where he made many friends. Most recently, he worked at Dollywood, where he loved meeting new people, driving the tram, and playing Santa Claus for the children. He was a devoted husband, father, grandfather, brother and friend. Robert had a huge heart, a contagious smile, and never met a stranger. He will be missed by many.
He was preceded in death by a grandson, Robbie Phillips; his parents, Paul and Lucille Phillips; and brothers, Richard Phillips and Roger Phillips.
Surviving are his wife of 55 years, Kathie Phillips; daughters, Paula Welch (William), Jonesville, Va., Robin Collins (Tim) and Shawna Swiney (Greg), both of Big Stone Gap; grandchildren, Cera Roberts (Clinton), Sydnie Cothron (Bryson), Emily Collins, Hannah Collins, Hunter Swiney, and Madison Rines (Dillon); step grandson, Joe Welch; great grandchildren, Chloe Roberts, Jameson Roberts and Josiah Ivy-Mae Walker; siblings, Randy Phillips (Mary), Rocky Phillips (Linda) and Russell Phillips (Connie), all of Big Stone Gap, Rhelda Collins (Michael), East Stone Gap, Va. and Becky Owens (Gary), Johnson City, Tn.; several nieces and nephews; aunt, Juanita Green, Knoxville, Tn.; and special friend, J. R. Morrow, Dandridge, Tn.
The family will receive friends from 12:00pm until 2:00pm Friday, Dec. 10, 2021, at Gilliam Funeral Home, 618 Wood Ave. W., Big Stone Gap. The service will follow at 2:00pm with his brother, Russell Phillips, officiating.
A graveside service will follow at American Legion Cemetery.
Gilliam Funeral Home and Crematory is honored to serve the Phillips family.
To view the obituary online and offer condolences, visit

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