Phyllis Ilene Burkhart, 89

Phyllis Ilene Burkhart, 89, of Harlan, Indiana passed away December 28, 2020 at her home.  She was born on July 13, 1931 in Fort Wayne, Indiana to the late Frank and Dessie Van Dolah.  Phyllis graduated from Bowling Green State University and taught elementary school for 31 years in Williams County.  After her retirement she tutored students for many years and maintained a close relationship with them for years.

Phyllis was honored by being names a Jennings Scholar in the mid 1970’s, which remained a special achievement to her abilities as an educator.  She was voted into the membership of Alpha Delta Kappa Honorary Sorority for women educators in 1970; she served the Alpha Mu Chapter in Williams County, holding various offices including President during the years.  On September 28, 2020 she became a Golden Sister in Recognition of 50 years of Membership in Alpha Delta Kappa.  She was an accomplished seamstress, quilter and painter.  Her artistic ability showed in her home décor, which changed with the seasons.  After retiring, she worked as a basket artisan at Sauder Village.  Throughout her life, with all of her accomplishments and trials, she remained a devote Christian.

She is survived by her daughter Patricia Burkhart of Harlan, Indiana; sister Sandra Fletter of Fort Wayne, Indiana; and sister-in-law Marilyn Van Dolah of Spencerville, Indiana.

Phyllis was preceded in death by her husband Richard Burkhart, parent Frank and Dessie Van Dolah, brothers Richard, Robert and Thomas Van Dolah, and sister Donna Gammon.

Visitation for Phyllis will be on Wednesday, January 6th from 11am-12pm at the Thompson Funeral Home on Main Street in Montpelier.  Services will follow at 12pm at the funeral home.  Those wishing to attend services should wear a mask and follow the recommended social distancing guidelines.   Memorial contributions may be given to St Jude Children’s Hospital.

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