Philip Chester Cornelius Jr. of Grand Rapids passed away peacefully in his home on Monday, November 16 at the age of 95. He was born to the late Philip Chester Cornelius and Helen Irene Cornelius on June 1, 1925. He was preceded in death by his wife of 57 years, Corrine. He will be lovingly remembered by his son, David Cornelius and wife Jan, daughter Mary Lynn, grandchildren Michael and Daniel Cornelius, sister Joan Major, and brother Harold Cornelius. Phil graduated from East Grand Rapids High School in 1943 and enlisted in the 138th Naval Construction Battalion as a SEABEE, serving most of his 3-year tour in the Aleutian Islands. Following his service during WWII, Phil completed his education at the University of Michigan, joining his father in 1951 at the Wolverine Upholstery Company, which later became Wolverine Showrooms, a wholesale furniture distributer. Phil served in a number of positions with the National Wholesale Furniture Association, including President of the Association in 1974. Phil enjoyed skiing, hunting, fishing, and spending time with his family. He and Corrine met après ski on the dance floor at Boyne Mountain, and their lifelong passion for skiing with each other, family, and friends continued until Phil broke a hip skiing at age 80 and was forced to finally hang-up his skis. Phil was an avid hunter and fisherman, whose passion for outdoor pursuits rubbed off on his children and grandchildren. He was a member of Grass Lake Hunting and Fishing Club for more than 50 years and he, Corrine, and the family enjoyed spending time bird watching, trout fishing, and enjoying nature at their cabin on the Little Manistee River. Phil and Corrine were members of Mayflower church, joining and serving since 1966. A celebration of life will be held at a later date. The family wishes to extend a heartfelt thank you to his Faith Hospice team, his Breton Ridge staff and friends, and to his cherished caregiving companions. Memorial contributions can be made to Faith Hospice, 2100 Raybrook SE, Suite 300, Grand Rapids, MI 49546 or The Land Conservancy of West Michigan, 400 Ann St NW, Grand Rapids, MI 49504.
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2100 Raybrook SE, Suite 300, Grand Rapids MI 49546
Land Conservancy of W. Michigan