Phyllis Martin Pilout was born Phyllis Delores Martin in Amelia County, Virginia, on April 15, 1939, to Mitchell David and Ruth-Ellen Martin. Shortly after her birth, Mitchell David Martin was drafted for war-time service into the Army in 1942. As the result of that Phyllis and her siblings went to live with several different family members in North Carolina for a period time, until the family could be reunited in Richmond, Virginia, in 1946. As a teenager, Phyllis loved music and was a very good singer as part of her school chorus. Phyllis met John R. Ravis senior in 1959, while he was stationed as a soldier at Fort Lee, Virginia. John and Phyllis soon married, and had a lovely little daughter, Christy Rebecca in February of 1960. Little Christy was born with lung issues and tragically passed away several days later. John and Phyllis were devastated. Phyllis and John moved to Pennsylvania, where another daughter, Rhonda was born to them in 1961. Soon after Rhonda's birth, John's work motivated the Ravis family to move to New York City where two sons, John Junior and Darren Joseph were born. During this time, John Junior was injured in a fall and was hospitalized and out of school for several months. Phyllis went daily to John's school, collected the day's studies, and took it to the hospital, where she taught him to read and write. Upon returning to school, John Junior's teachers were amazed that Phyllis had taught John so well, that he was actually ahead of his peers and was therefore able to be moved ahead of his classmates. Phyllis and John divorced in 1968. John returned to Pennsylvania and Phyllis and the children remained in New York City until they moved back to Virginia with the assistance of Phyllis' siblings in 1972. Phyllis and her children initially settled in Richmond, Virginia, living very near to her family and her dear Aunt Laura, whom she loved very much. Once she was established in Virginia, Phyllis was re-introduced to a High School sweetheart, Joseph A. Pilout III. Joseph had three children; Cynthia; Joseph IV; and James. Joseph Alfred Pilout III and Phyllis rekindled their old flame and were married in 1973. Phyllis, Joseph Alfred, and all six children resided in Ettrick, Virginia, until the family moved to Colonial Heights, Virginia, in 1974, where they continued to raise all six children. During this time Joseph worked as a foreman at ICI Americas and Phyllis attend school to become a Certified Nursing Assistant. She aspired to become a registered nurse, but do to deteriorating health; she was unable to complete her training. Alfred passed away in 2003. Phyllis lived with her children and actively mentored her many grandchildren, until such time she had to enter the Hopewell Healthcare Center for constant care due to declining health. Her beloved son, Darren passed away from cancer in 2015.
While at the Hopewell Healthcare Center, Phyllis attended church often and became very close with the nurses and staff there. Phyllis was a wonderful mother and mentor. On her way to heaven, she leaves behind: children: Rhonda Crowder, John Ravis, Darren Ravis (deceased), Jimmy Pilout, Joey Pilout, Cindy Pilout; brothers and sisters: Frances and husband Gibson Fowler, Norma McGlocklin, MD Martin, Merrill Martin, Paul Martin, Tom Martin (deceased); grandchildren: Miranda Mizzell-Wolfrey and husband Travis Wolfrey, Nicholas Hawkins, Michael Crowder, Patrick and wife Valerie Daniels, Joseph Ravis; great-grandchildren: Zachary and Colton Mizzell-Wolfrey, Kayla, Jaden, Wyatt, Kacie and Elizabeth Hawkins, Owen and Nolan Daniels; and numerous nieces and nephews.
The family will receive friends from 2-4 p.m. Sunday, August 4, 2019, at the E. Alvin Small Funeral Home, 2033 Boulevard, Colonial Heights, Va. Funeral services will be held 1 p.m. Monday, August 5, 2019, at Union Baptist Church, 22110 Genito Rd, Amelia Court House, VA 23002. Condolences and memories can be registered at www.ealvinsmall.com.