Phyllis Hope Harris Burns born August 29, 1947 in Siler City passed away March 19, 2019 at home in Pittsboro, NC. She was preceded in death by her parents, Dorothy Hart King and Bruce Harris. Phyllis leaves behind her husband, Barry Burns of the home; children, Shane (Bonnie) Burns, Josh (Cindie) Burns and August (Denise) Burns; grandchildren, Jake and Harris, all of Durham; sister, Susan (Chuck) Brantley of Pittsboro; brother, Vic Harris of Burlington, brother, Jeff Harris of Pittsboro; and sister, Andrea Kadlec of Seattle; her favorite uncle, Harold (Rebecca) Harris and many loved aunts, uncles, nieces, nephews and cousins. During the darkest hours, caretakers, Barbara McQueen, Liz Tedesco, Edith Bonilla, Rhonda Goldston, Kierra Marsh and Lorene Barrett became members of the family as well as the Hospice family Shannon Morgan and Cynthia Royals-Wilson.
Talented in so many ways, Phyllis was primarily a recognized watercolorist who recently achieved a prominent status to become a Signature Member of the Watercolor Society of North Carolina (WSNC). She was a member of the National Watercolor Society, and Watercolor Society of North Carolina. Phyllis received many awards from various originations including WSNC, NC State Fair, Moore County Arts Council, Duke University and others. The NC State College of Veterinary Medicine (CVM) also published her artwork on six covers of their CVM magazine. She was also published in the Eno Magazine at Duke University. Phyllis was drawn to nature and her specialty was painting the animals and nature around her. She had a unique ability to capture the animals’ personality and the eyes to their soul. Phyllis’s painting skills were mostly self-taught and by attending artists workshops.
Phyllis was also a Master Gardener who loved getting her hands in the dirt. She had her garden as well as her many flowerbeds for 50 years, which featured beautiful rock walls and balanced standing rocks, while planting numerous trees in her yard.
It seems that anything she ever did, she always excelled. Her formal education ended as a graduate from the Veterinary Medical Technology program at CCCC. Her many talents included learning to play the dulcimer, guitar, but finally settling on the banjo. In the last six years, her children Shane and August joined Phyllis in her love for music. Phyllis also spent years playing music with other talented musicians.
Phyllis taught Sunday school at Chatham United Methodist Church in her early years. She studied the bible and the Christian faith but as she grew, she also learned the teachings of many cultures and religions as she formed her understanding of her place in God’s sacred and majestic world for all. Phyllis considered herself more spiritual than religious having a close connection with God through nature.
A beautiful spirit loved by all who met her, moves on to her next journey, a deeper bond with God.
Visitation will be held at Donaldson Funeral Home in Pittsboro, NC on Saturday, March 30 from 7-9pm. A memorial service and celebration of life will be held at Chatham United Methodist Church, 1826 Chatham Church Road, Moncure on Sunday, March 31 at 2pm followed by a reception in the fellowship hall.
In lieu of flowers, please make donations to UNC Hospice or NC Botanical Gardens.
P.O. Box 1077, Pittsboro NC 27312
NC Botanical Gardens
100 Old Mason Farm Rd,, Chapel Hill NC 27517