Micah I. Evans
Development Director, Scottish Rite
Foundations of Nebraska
In an age when it is rare that sons join fathers in Freemasonry, the Phil- lip family of the Alliance Valley is an
even rarer exception. Under the leadership of Bob Phillip, one son, three grandsons, and a great-grandson continue to
be active at the Alliance Reunions.
In October 2017 the Orient of Nebraska coroneted Terry Phillip a 33° Inspector General
Honorary from the Valley of
Alliance. While any Scottish
Rite Freemason receiving the
highest honor of the Scottish
Rite is always newsworthy, his
coronation as a 33° Scottish
Rite Mason is exceptionally
newsworthy because Terry
represents four generations
of active Scottish Rite Masons, with three generations
honored as 33° Scottish Rite
Masons, and one a 32° Knight
Commander of the Court of
Honour (KCCH). Of course the Phillip
family isn’t the first to have several generations of Honors men, but a long family
tradition of Freemasonry is rare, and four
generations of Honors men is even rarer.
At age 96, Bob Phillip, 33° is patriarch
of the family. Bob was raised a Master
Mason at Alliance Lodge No. 183 on
April 25, 1946. He began work as a car-
penter while in high school. Bob served
in the Navy during World War II. After
he returned home, he was a construction
supervisor until he retired in 1986. A co-
worker paid for his Scottish Rite degrees
on the condition that he get involved
with the stage crew to pay it back. Bob
must be still paying off that debt, because
he’s been on the stage crew ever since,
missing only one reunion since 1946!
Bob ran the stage crew until his son Don
took over in 1986. Bob still attends Scot-
tish Rite meetings, reunions and events,
driving two hours from Hermosa, South
Dakota—often in the company of Daisy
May, his Shih Tzu, so well-trained, she
could probably confer a few Masonic lec-
tures if Bob set his mind to training the
dog! Bob received his 33° in 1991.
Bob’s son Don is also a 33° Scottish
Rite Mason, receiving his 33° in 2007.
Don served aboard a U.S Navy ship, and
was part of the recovery of space vehicles during early missions. He worked
construction from 1957 until he retired
in 2007. Don has studied martial arts
most of his adult life, and is now a Grand
Master in the art of Kamashin Jiu Jitsu.
Don and his son Scott travel all over the
United States as martial arts instructors,
certifying students in the karate degrees.
Don’s oldest son is Walt, who is a professional massage therapist. Walt is also in
charge of the sound system during Reunions, and helps with the set-up of the
stage as well. He received his 33° in 2007.
Don’s second son is Scott Phillip, a
fencing contractor in Denver, and never
misses a Reunion, working with Walt on
the sound system and stage set-up. He
also travels the nation with Don teaching
martial arts. Scott received his 33° in 2013.
The third son is Terry Phillip, who is the
curator of the reptile gardens in
Rapid City, SD and is an expert
on poisonous snakes. Terry received his 33° in 2017.
Walt’s son Geoffery Phillip—Bob’s great-grandson—
works for the state of Colora-
do as a psychologist. He does
several parts in the Degree
work in the Reunions, and re-
ceived his 32°, KCCH in 2015.
At the Fall, 2016 Reunion,
Sovereign Grand Inspector
General in Nebraska Charles
V. Sederstrom, Jr., 33°, rec-
ognized Bob Phillip for his
remarkable 70-year membership in the
Valley of Alliance. At the 33° coronation
this past October, Charles Sederstrom, Jr.,
presented the Phillip family the Nebraska
Scottish Rite Heritage Award, recognizing
four generations of active Scottish Rite
Masons in the family. He called attention
to Bob’s active membership in the Scot-
tish Rite. Many men of 70 or 80 years old
might be content to sit on the sidelines—
not Bob—at the ripe age of 96, he may be
a wee bit slower than he was 20 or 30 years
ago, but he continues to work the stage
crew and keep the Phillip family in line!
OF THE PHILLIP FAMILY
ACTIVE IN THE VALLEY OF ALLIANCE, NEBRASKA
Front row (l. to r.): Ill. Bros. Walt Phillip, 33°; Bob Phillip, 33°;
Charles V. Sederstrom, Jr., 33°, SGIG in Nebraska; John Ferguson,
33°, Personal Rep. for Alliance, NE; and Don Phillip, 33°.
Back row (l. to r.): Scott Phillip, 33°, and Terry Phillip, 33°.