White DoveWhere Caring Is A Family Tradition


Phyllis Ann (Ratliff) Easterling

11/30/1941 - 10/15/2020
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On a beautiful fall day full of sunshine, Thursday October 15, 2020, Phyllis Ann (Ratliff) Easterling, age 78, was carried home to heaven in the loving arms of her Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.

Phyllis was born the second child of Kermit and Vadney (Coleman) Ratliff on November 30, 1941, in Gary, WV. Growing up in the Appalachian hills of southeastern Kentucky, she always said she was “proud to be a coal miner’s daughter.” In the summer of 1962 Phyllis met the love of her life, Cletis Easterling, at a church picnic, and on their first date he asked her to marry him. They were married on October 22, 1962, and shared 56 years together “as one.” They made their home together in the suburbs of Chicago, IL and raised one daughter, Teresa Van Cuick. During the summer of 1979 they moved to Neenah, WI, where Phyllis resided until her death. She was an Avon representative for several years as she always enjoyed meeting new people. Phyllis also enjoyed going to garage sales, loved watching Wheel of Fortune and always looked forward to playing Dominoes and Rook. But what she really loved most was spending time with family and friends.

Phyllis is survived by one daughter and son-in-law, Teresa and Brian Van Cuick, New London, WI; her one and only granddaughter, Kelsey Van Cuick, New London, WI; her nephew, Kermit Rowe and his wife Nancy, South Vienna, OH; two great-nephews, Aaron Rowe and his wife Kailee and daughter Madelyn, Alden, NY; and Joshua Rowe, New Albany, OH; several cousins and many special friends and family. 

She was preceded in death by her husband and parents; her only sister, DonReeda (Ratliff) Rowe; her father-in-law and mother-in-law, Manton and Lillian Easterling; two special brothers-in-law, Theodore Rowe and William C King; and one special sister-in-law, Pauline (Easterling) King; as well as aunts, uncles and special friends.

Phyllis was a proud and loving member of the Little Ellen Old Regular Baptist Church in Alsip, IL. She so enjoyed worshipping the Lord with her brothers and sisters in the church and outside of it.     

A visitation for family and close friends will be held on Friday, October 23, 2020, from 11:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. at Mueller Funeral Home, 904 E. Main St., Winneconne, WI. A funeral service will immediately follow the visitation at the funeral home at 1:00 p.m. with Brother Lowell Mullins of the Little Ellen Old Regular Baptist Church, Alsip, IL and Pastor Kermit Rowe of Liberty Baptist Temple, Springfield, OH, officiating. Due to the state COVID mandate, masks are highly recommended and will be available at the funeral home. Burial will follow in the Clayton Cemetery.

If you wish please submit online condolences to muellerfh.net.

Lisa Shupe-Myles wrote on October 22, 2020
Think of you Teresa! Sending hugs and prayers your way. Love you.

Tim and Debbie Thomas wrote on October 20, 2020
Phyllis Easterling was as kind and gentle as a person could be. She loved her family dearly and had a genuine interest in others that reflected her personal relationship with her Lord and Savior. In this day and age of social media and instant satisfaction Phyllis would always take the time to compose and write 3 and 4 page letters to us that we always looked forward to. Checking on our welfare and bringing us up to date on the rest of the family was her way of letting us know how much she cared. She will be truly missed.

Lanette Van Cuick wrote on October 18, 2020
Teresa and family, I’m so sorry for your loss. I know your heartache is deep. Tears are grief’s way of saying “I love you”. Remember the good times and the laughter and above all, give yourself time to mourn and time to heal. Everyone is different, so there is no appropriate time frame. Please know that I’m thinking of you and you are all in my prayers. If you need anything at all, I’m here for you.

Kay Cook wrote on October 17, 2020
Special memories of my Aunt Phyllis! She had a beautiful smile and wonderful sense of humor! She will be greatly missed by all.