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Philip Jack Riffey


Philip Jack Riffey, 92, of Urbana, died Friday, May 15, 2020, at Manor Care in Cedar Rapids.
Phil was born Feb. 15, 1928, in Iowa City, the son of John and Alice (Fetherkile) Riffey. He was the sixth of nine children and grew up in the cotton fields of Arkansas and Missouri.
In 1950, Phil was drafted
in the Korean conflict. He completed his training at
Vint Hill Farms in Virginia. He then was stationed in Alaska until 1952, where he was in the U.S. Army Security Agency.
He met his wife, Shirley Boyles, in 1954 and married in 1955. They made their home in Urbana, living in the same house for 60 years.
Phil worked endlessly keeping the his lawn immaculate. He was employed by Pettibone Universal Engineering for 35 years. He started as an apprentice, working his way to manufacturing manager and retired at age 57. After retirement, Phil and Shirley traveled and spent time at their weekend cabin at Harpers Ferry. After Shirley's death, Phil decided to go to Casa Grande, Ariz., to spend time with his best friend of more than 60 years, Bill Pettit. While there, he was reunited with longtime friend Rose Gilbert of Montana. They had so much fun together that they spend their winters there.
Survivors include his daughters, Cindy (Larry) Haars of Urbana and Gail Dyslin of Cedar Rapids; three grandchildren, Stephanie (Hans) Riffey of Center Point, Jon (Bryn) LeVelle and Tanner Haars of Cedar Rapids; a great-granddaughter, Nicole (Wyatt) Hoffman of Center Point; two sisters, Janet Stickle of Anamosa and Martha Relf of Arizona; his in-laws; the Boyles family; many nieces and nephews; and even more good friends.
Phil was proceeded in death by his wife of 54 years, Shirley; a son, Steven Riffey; a daughter-in-law, Deb Riffey; a granddaughter, Denise Riffey; and three brothers and three sisters.
Some of Phil's interests including telling stories, usually involving a beer and his friends, the Pettits and the Ushers, anything that had to do with the outdoors, going on his last mushroom hunt when he was 91, gambling, a rousing game of Skip Bo and his family. Phil treasured the time he spent with his family and was proud of them all.
Per Phil's wishes, his body was cremated. The family asks you to share a memory or a story on at www.iowacreamtion.com under obituaries.
The family hopes to have a Celebration of Life at a later date.
Dad, watch for deer and make sure you check your oil!
"Hell, I'm 92. I've lived a good life. I am happy. Even the best of us run out of gas." - Phil Riffey
Memorials may be directed to the family to later be used to buy and distribute books for kids.
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