Phyllis Ann Hunt, 80, earned her wings on Monday, Jan. 13, 2020, in Columbia. Visitation will be held Tuesday, Jan. 21, 2020, from 2 to 3 p.m. followed by a service at 3 p.m., both at Memorial Funeral Home. Burial will be in Memorial Park Cemetery. In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to the 4-H Foundation, c/o Memorial Funeral Home, 1217 Business Loop 70. W, Columbia, Missouri, 65202.

Phyllis was born Oct. 26, 1939, in Mexico, Missouri, to James and Viola (Smith) Harrison who preceded her in death. She married Feb. 14, 1958, in Mexico, Missouri, to Billy Joe Hunt, who preceded her in death in 2006.

How do I adequately honor her 80 years of life, living and giving to her family in my words? How can I begin to tell you how much we loved her and how much she loved her littles. What words will best prove that this modest, tiny little woman, through years of marriage and life experience, has earned a doctorate in domestic engineering, culinary arts, animal science, horticulture, and a masters in multitasking.

She learned early in life how to cook, clean and care for her siblings. She moved away from her hometown at 17, fell in love and married young. She raised her family, often without much help. She worked for Columbia Public Schools as a cook and then as the kitchen manager at Midway Heights Elementary School. Oh how she loved baking and cooking for those kids and the teachers. On the farm, she could work all day alongside her men in the tobacco field and simultaneously cook a feast for all to enjoy, clean it up and do the laundry while they sat and discussed how hard they worked.

What words could I choose to describe her incredible Dr. Doolittle skills. How many 4-H steers has she tamed with her sweet demeanor. How will I ever find the words to memorialize the woman who loved her husband unconditionally, supported her family unwaveringly, and worked tirelessly to care for her husband through 18 years of illness. She was tougher than most men and completely willing to do whatever it took to get the job done.

She raised three sons, two of which married and multiplied, one she laid to rest: Joseph Victor (1959-2001) Michael W. (wife Kara) and Mark A. (wife Becky). She welcomed and spoiled five grandchildren: Heather Blankenship (Jesse), Zachary Hunt (Nikki), Kelsi Peuster (Chris), Amber Richardson (Patrick) and Dustin; and seven great-grandchildren: Tyler and Chloe Richardson, Quinn and Peyton Hunt, Gates and Kendall Peuster and Owen Blankenship. She held us together and gave us all strength when Amber Elizabeth Richardson (1987-2019) left us way too soon.

How can I begin to pen the last words that will be read to remember her by? This woman was amazing; she will forever have my admiration, respect and my promises to keep her memory alive. Rest in peace, Beautiful, you’ve earned it.

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