Phillip James Holmes

Phil Holmes was called home to be with his Lord and Savior Friday, November 15 2019.

Celebration Life Service: 10:00 a.m. Saturday, November 23, at Highland Baptist Church, 3014 Maple, in Waco.

Phil was born July 30, 1948 in Brownfield to Willie (Bill) James and Bonnie Lee (Love) Holmes. His dad owned and operated a service station, where Phil worked at his very first job – cleaning headlights of the cars buying gas. In 1954, Phil’s family moved to Lubbock where he graduated from Lubbock High School and Texas Tech University. It was as a senior in high school that he met and married the love of his life, Gwen Coleman. God blessed them with two children , Phillip Shane, who was truly a gift from God and Shelley Gwen, who brought “sunshine” and joy into their lives. This past August Phil and Gwen celebrated their 51st anniversary!

Phil loved all sports, especially baseball, and was selected an all-star catcher in the Northwest Little League. As an adult he was a player and coach for FBC Georgetown in the church softball league and took them to nationals. He served in the US Army Corp of Engineers from 1968 to 1974 and reached the rank of staff sergeant. Phil has always strived to provide for himself and his family. He delivered newspapers as a boy and was named a star carrier. He also worked at Mac’s Drive-In Grocery after school and on weekends from his sophomore to his senior year of high school, and part-time at Brown’s Varsity Shop while at Texas Tech. After graduation, he worked 28 years as a fundraiser for the American Cancer Society and The American Heart Association. Georgetown was home for 22 special years and Phil was very active in ministry at FBC. He served as a Sunday School teacher, Lay Counselor, Men’s Ministry Coordinator and Chairman of the Deacons. Phil and Gwen had a burning desire to strengthen and heal marriages and led multiple training sessions and retreats for couples. They formed friendships there that have lasted a lifetime.

In 2000, Waco became their home and Phil worked in the Foundation as a Major Gifts Officer for the Hillcrest Health System. He led a record-breaking fundraising campaign for the new hospital. But eight years later after dealing with a devastating lay-off from his job, Phil was diagnosed with Huntington’s Disease, and for 11 years he faced this terminal monster with courage and faith, longing for the day he would see Jesus’ face. Friday, November 15, God answered his prayer and carried him “safely home.” From a nine year old boy embracing Christ for the first time, to a 71-year old man facing eternity, God proved himself faithful to the end. We thank our family, friends, Highland Baptist Church and Bluebonnet Hospice for providing prayers, financial support and loving care through these difficult years. God’s love was revealed to us through each one of you.

Both of Phil’s parents preceded him in death.

Phil is survived by his wife, Gwen; his son, Shane and daughter-in-law Laney; his daughter, Shelley; five treasured grandchildren, who were the joy of his life – Dylan, Austin, Cayden, Xander and Ashlyn; and four beloved sisters, Patti, Lynda, Lesa and Joy. Phil was so proud of you all.

The family requests that memorials be made to The Huntington’s Disease Society of America at

Print Obituary & Condolences Print Obituary & Condolences

Condolence Messages

  1. To the Family,

    I had the extreme pleasure of working with Phil at Hillcrest in the Development Department. He was an amazing man and I treasured the time that we worked together. Many prayers for you all during this difficult time.

  2. Phil was a good friend, & I always enjoyed our visits together. We both loved Bar B Q, & had many Bar B Q lunches together. At one time, I was the head of a charity here in town, & he advised me & my fund raisers & helped us set up a fund raising program. However, what I will always remember about Phil is how he suffered with Huntington’s Disease with great courage, a good attitude & a ton of faith. I am sure he had his down times, but I never saw them.

  3. Phil was one of the finest men I have ever known. Little did he know that as Chair of the Pastor Search Committee at FBC Georgetown that the new pastor he helped find would become his neighbor. As a friend, church member/leader and neighbor he was exceptional.

  4. My husband Weldon and I knew Phil when he was a young boy and attending Flint Avenue Baptist Church in Lubbock starting in 1956. For a time, Phillip was in the elementary Sunday School group which we led. Many Sundays he would go home with us after the morning service and spend the afternoons with us until we we went back to the evening service and he would rejoin his very nice mother Bonnie. We were newly weds and had no children and thought that Phillip was the most precious little boy we had ever seen. In fact, we named one of our sons Phillip because we had loved and had such fond memories of that little fellow Phillip Holmes so much. A few years ago, after we had not seen or heard from him in so many years, he wrote us an e-mail and said what a Christian influence Weldon was when he was young. After that, we often received e-mails from him until he was no longer able to do that. We rejoice at knowing Phillip is with the Lord and we will enjoy his presence again.

  5. Roland Rodriguez

    My dearest friend and Christian brother. You will be missed, but never forgotten. The greatest moments in my younger adult life was certainly our softball years enjoying fellowship and sometimes some really “intense” competitive moments with an opposing team. Our couples trip to Hawaii was outstanding, even when you drove the golf cart over a solid barrier and I just knew we had bought a golf cart.???? You are completely healed and you can “Go Rest High On That Mountain.”

    Roland Rodriguez

  6. Ron and Cara Lester

    I so wish I could be there to celebrate Phil’s life with you, but we will certainly be lifting you all up in prayer on this hard day of so many emotions. Phil was always such a great role model for me as an older cousin in law. I looked up to him and admired his calm and easy going nature as well as his apparent disciplined professionalism. Love you all and so sorry for your great loss.

  7. The. Houchard Family

    Phil and his family are special to the Houchard family. I fondly remember our young families ties together on Paxton in Carrollton. Then we were reunited again in Georgetown for 3 years. Special times there also at all the church functions. Although life took us in completely different directions, the Holmes have been in
    our thoughts and prayers. Phil was such a special man in so many ways, but best of all I appreciated his good natured frienship. I know he will be missed by his family and friends but what a comforting thought to us all to know he is now with our Lord.

  8. Kristan Sedam Creek

    I am thinking of you and praying for your family. Praying for peace and comfort for your broken hearts.

  9. My oldest friendship of 66 years. What a pleasure having Phil as a friend and brother in law. From splitting Sunday lunch biscuits, camping, hunting and even testing Texas TeTech’s new black helmets what a ride. I never saw more faith than Phil showed battling Huntington. In our weekly calls I’d ask how are you he saw “I have my little challenges but we’re getting by”. Never complained or second guess God. Phil knee who he was and to whom he belonged. Praise Jesus Christ for taking him home.

  10. Donna Beth Norman

    Rejoicing for his homecoming . Precious man! Praying for you, sweet Gwen. Never saw you, you didn’t have a sweet smile on your face. I know its been a long, hard journey. Praying for God’s peace, strength, and mercy. Sorry I can’t be at the Celebration Service. I’m recovering from surgery and my sweet husband is in the hospital. Praying for God’s loving arms to surround you in the days to come. Love you, sweet friend!

  11. I always admired & loved Phil. I remember him always fun, smiling & calm & so good looking & a true man of God . I watched him & Gwen at church when visited & they were wonderful in ministry to couples. I always admired them both individually & as a couple. When he & Gwen dated in high school I was in junior high & during the summer we’d swim at Maxey Park. Gwen was envied by all the girls there. He was the talk of the pool. Phil took his shirt off & the girls were swooning. Not only was he good looking, had a great build but was the only guy covered in hair such manliness to all the girls. Hahaha He was kind smart & a great man , a joy to be around. They were an amazing admired couple. The disease took its toll soon made it impossible for him to travel & he was so missed at every family functions . He was always missed & loved. He may be gone from us but never forgotten & always loved. Love & prayers for all the family. You’re all wonderful & loved & admired!!! Phil & Gwen have done a great job as & grandparents, you’re an incredible family !

  12. I’m friends with his sister Joy and I’ve heard so many good things about Phil and his family— May God Bless each and everyone of you and all of his family— Beverly Allen

Leave Your Condolence