Phyllis Hutchinson Conway died on May 29, 2012 after a long bout with breathing problems. As a child she had whooping cough followed by pneumonia which left her limited in her breathing capacity for life.
Most Islanders will remember Phyllis as the coordinator of the successful Chilmark Community Church Flea Market. This she did for some 14 years when it was held on the church grounds and on rented property on Middle Road.
Phyllis was born in 1926 in a little village in New Jersey between Freehold and Hightstown. Her parents were Frank and Ethel Hutchinson and they ran a large general farm. She had two sisters.
She attended NJC college for women, now Rutgers University, where she met Robert Conway. They became engaged in their senior year in 1948 and married the next year at the college in New Brunswick.Phyllis earned a doctor’s degree in Education at Rutgers while teaching school in Roselle, N.J., for five years. After a move to Basking Ridge, she taught in the grade school at Bernards Township for 19 years.
After spending summers in Chilmark for 14 years, the Conroys purchased a converted barn-house near the beach and retired there after adding onto the house enough to make it their winter home for 26 more years.
There were four children, Janet from Wyoming, Robin from New Jersey, Betsy from Colorado, and David from New Jersey.
Phyllis will be cremated. A memorial service will be held late in July at the Chilmark Community Church once the new pipe organ which Phyllis was so interested in is finished. A private interment of the ashes will be placed at the Chilmark Cemetery soon after the memorial service.