6 N Main • Caldwell, KS • 620-845-6424
December 13, 1942 ~ February 22, 2021
Philip Thomas Perry was born December 13th, 1942,to Lee and Addie Perry in Caldwell, KS. Phil often spoke of childhood memories which included the South Osage gang playing kick the can, going to little Grandma Dora’s for a poached egg and tea breakfast, carrying out groceries for Detrick’s Grocery and Little League Baseball. While at CHS, he played on the basketball team. One of his favorite stories took place his senior year when Caldwell played Medicine Lodge in the first game in the new high school gym. The game was in overtime. Phil passed the ball to his best friend, Joe Norton, who went up for the winning basket. Phil always joked that they almost named the gym, “Perry Fieldhouse”.
After graduating from CHS in 1960, Phil attended the University of Kansas for 2 years and graduated from Emporia State University in 1965 with a BS in business management. After graduation, he became a national bank examiner for 10 years and was then appointed a regional director in the 10th National Bank Regional Headquarters in Kansas City. In 1968, following the “Pueblo” incident, Phil’s Air National Guard unit was activated. He spent one year in Kun San, South Korea. After his tour of duty, he returned to Wichita resuming his job as a bank examiner. He was later transferred to Columbia, MO.
Phil and JoLynne met in Columbia in 1974 on a blind date arranged by mutual friends. For JoLynne, it was love at first sight. Phil, who was a happy bachelor, realized that his single days were numbered. One year after their meeting, Phil proposed. No one could have been happier for Phil and JoLynne than his older sister, Diana. When Phil was 30 or so, with no prospects in sight, Di told her boys, Matt and Kurt, “Uncle Phil will probably be spending all of his holidays with us”. Phil and JoLynne were married September 6, 1975. Phil knew that anyone he married must be an avid sports fan. They spent part of their honeymoon in Birmingham, AL attending a University of Missouri vs University of Alabama football game where the Tigers beat the Crimson Tide. Though Phil rooted for the Tigers while in Columbia, his real love was for the Kansas Jayhawks. He took great pride in that he “converted” JoLynne from a Tiger to a Jayhawk.
In 1977, they were blessed with their daughter, Leslie Marie. Phil returned to Caldwell in 1980 as executive Vice President of the Caldwell State Bank. He became President and CEO 3 years later. He knew that Caldwell was the perfect place to raise Leslie. Phil loved and adored his Leslie expressing pride countless times through the years. Phil enjoyed being with Les and all her friends. But he held a special place in his heart for Alissa Overall and Courtney Akers who nicknamed him “Phil-babe”.
Phil loved fishing especially at Grand Lake with Karl Willey and Lowell Dierking. His dream was to have a place at the lake. This dream was realized in 2007 and was just steps away from Karl’s and Lowell’s. Phil cherished the times when his grandson Trey came to the lake. He taught Trey to fish, and many times Trey caught more fish than Grandad. Trey was the light of his grandad’s life. When Trey was little and would come to Caldwell, Phil would take Trey to the bank and tour him around the neighborhood on the riding lawn mower.
Phil’s passion was KU basketball where he held season tickets from 1989 through 2020. He enjoyed traveling to follow the KU basketball team to holiday tournaments in Honolulu, Las Vegas, and New York City and NCAA regionals in San Antonio, Oklahoma City, and Denver. Phil attended the Final Four in New Orleans, and again with JoLynne to Atlanta and San Antonio. Even though JoLynne questioned the trip to San Antonio in fear of a loss, this trip became one of their favorite memories when the Jayhawks brought home the 2008 NCAA Championship trophy. It was one of the top highlights in Phil and JoLynne’s lives eclipsed only by their marriage and birth of their daughter.
In 2010, Phil and JoLynne moved to Shawnee, KS to be closer to Leslie and Trey. Phil enjoyed watching Trey play indoor and outdoor soccer and just spending time with him. Phil and JoLynne soon found their favorite hangouts and made friends with “the regulars”. They found their church home at Bonner Springs United Methodist Church. Often, Phil made the comment “I love that little church” because it had a small hometown feel.
Phil and JoLynne considered Leslie’s friends, friends of their own and often joined the groups for get togethers and events. Phil was always accepting and kind to everyone he met in Leslie’s life. One of Les’s friends commented she was so thankful for moments and memories with Phil, “I feel so lucky to have had a little bit of Phil in my life”.
Phil listened to country music but he wasn’t so fond of the cross-over country. He was a George Strait, Alan Jackson, Martina McBride and Allison Kraus fan, and he passed that love of country music down to Leslie.
He is a past president of the Caldwell Chamber of Commerce, served on the Caldwell Cemetery Board, was a member of the Finance Committee Sumner County Hospital District No. 1, and treasurer of USD 360 for 15 years.
Phil was preceded in death by his parents, Lee and Addie Perry, and sister Diana Lee Voldeng.
Phil is survived by his wife, JoLynne; daughter Leslie Khan (Qamar) of Shawnee, KS; grandson Trey Curtis of Shawnee, KS; sister Jean Graves (Phil) of Tucson, AZ; niece Alysson Statz (Jed) of Cascade, ID; nephews Andrew Driscoll of Sacramento, CA, Matthew Voldeng of Bentonville, AR, and Kurt Voldeng (Bonnie) of Memphis, TN.
Memorials may be given in Phil's name to the Sumner County Hospital District #1 Constuction Fund and left in care of the mortuary.
Funeral services will be held 1:00 p.m. Saturday, February 27, 2021 at the Central Christian Church, Caldwell, Kansas. Interment will follow at 2:00 p.m. at the Caldwell City Cemetery.
Family requests that masks be worn and social distancing observed.