Phyllis Roethke Waldenfels

Published 10:00 pm Wednesday, March 2, 2016

Phyllis Roethke Waldenfels, a resident of Tryon for almost 50 years, died on March 1, 2016, at The Laurels of Hendersonville.

She was born on Jan. 20, 1916, in Tower City, N.D. In 1934, she was one of 12 graduates of Tower City High School. She graduated five years later from the University of North Dakota with a B.S. in commerce.

After her marriage to Frank James Waldenfels in 1941, she lived in Alexandria, Va., during World War II, and then on Long Island, N.Y., first in Lake Success and later in Manhasset. The family followed former neighbors to Tryon in the fall of 1963.

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She was a member of The Congregational Church, Tryon, where she sang in the choir, participated in the senior parish as a lay visitor, took photographs of new members, helped with the harvest festival, and was active on various boards and committees, as well as in the women’s fellowship.

She served as assistant to the head of the Lower School of the Spartanburg Day School and was certified by the Gesell Institute of Human Development at Yale to test applicants for readiness for first grade based on principles of child development. For several years, she took great pleasure in tutoring elementary students in Landrum for whom English was a second language. She also served as co-chair of the St. Luke’s Hospital Auxiliary. She was a driver for Meals on Wheels into her early nineties.

An accomplished pianist when she was young, her hobbies in Tryon included gardening, hiking, tennis and golf. She was also a member of P.E.O., a philanthropic organization for the advancement of women. Above all, she was a devoted daughter, sister, wife, mother, aunt, and grandmother.

Survivors include her children, James Patrick Waldenfels (Beverly) of Annandale, Va., Kathleen W. Dorman (Brad) of Takoma Park, Md., Thomas Paul Waldenfels of Hendersonville, four grandchildren, and five great-grandchildren.

A memorial service will be held at The Congregational Church, Tryon, on Saturday, March 12, at 11a.m., with a reception following in the Parish Hall. Memorial contributions may be made to The Congregational Church, Tryon, 210 Melrose Avenue, Tryon, NC 28782.

Submitted by Denise Hedges