S: See Dick Turn 50
FC: See Dick Turn 50 APRIL 6, 1961- APRIL 6, 2011
1: Richard Paul Phillips April 6. 1961
2: Dear Dick, Barb just called me with the request to write down some of the things I remember about the early days and all of the kind, wonderful things I can remember about that young man who is about to turn 50. I remember when we got the news that I was pregnant. It was wonderful news because I was getting old and I had given up on such great news. I was close to 40 and thought all the fun of having a baby was over. I had Barb, Fred and Joan - and then SURPRISE! “You are pregnant”! Pregnancy was easy and all went well. Then, came the beautiful baby boy and the hospital. I had the only baby with big brown eyes. He was here and he was ours! I would take Dickens for a walk in the big baby carriage and then, the one who liked pushing it the best was Joanie. She said several times,“Rich-ard,” like that. She loved taking him in the baby carriage. Barb was helpful in watching over him and, one day, saying that she, Barb, "would take care of him." I had a broken ankle from slipping on the ice after bringing the dog in. After the ankle was braced, I was seated on the kitchen sofa and I wanted coffee, but it was too complicated to get up and struggle with the coffee cup. So, I asked Dick if he would try to carry the coffee cup. | He nodded his head and his eyes grew large, then he carried the cup with coffee in it and I had my coffee. When Dick got older, he went to school and was the one the teachers always relied on to help with the other students. He was our pride and joy. One day after school, we went to the Red Owl and I could not carry everything from the store to the car soooo, I had to park Dick near the store with instructions to stay with the groceries. Poor Dick, he stayed with the groceries for almost an hour with all the people saying “Poor little boy, standing outside with the groceries.” It was hot and he was tired but he stayed with the groceries. He stood there until I returned and did not say a bad thing about me or cry about the situation. Some time about then, he brought home a statue of a little man standing there with his arms out that said “I love you this much!”. I still have that little man and I love him this much.....! After high school he was a swim instructor and a life guard. Whenever Dick did anything there was always lots of praise. Dick went off to college and met Jill, and they moved to Rockville, MD and have three beautiful children. | HAPPY 50TH BIRTHDAY DICKUMS! Love, Mom
3: Dear Dick, I wish I could be there with you today as you celebrate this important milestone birthday. I am beyond proud of the man you are, the father you are and the husband you are. You are the best son a father can have. I wish you the happiest birthday! With all my love Dad
4: See Dick Grow Up
5: ONCE A DIRECTOR, ALWAYS A DIRECTOR | Happy Birthday!!!!
6: One of my favorite memories of Dick is from when he was about two years old and I was about 15 yrs. old. He was “My baby brother”. Fred and I used to challenge each other, but Dick was always just my “baby”. I used to help out by putting him down for a nap and we would talk. There was a song out by Robert Goulet/Andy Williams called “I’d Rather Be Rich." It was the lead song for a movie with Sandra Dee by the same title. I don’t know that I ever saw the movie, but I loved the song. One day, I sang the phrase “I’d rather be rich”, (referencing the nickname for Richard, not the monetary concept of the movie). Anyway, Dick laughed and laughed at the phrase - not knowing what it was all about, something just struck him as being funny. Whenever I sang it to him, he would laugh and laugh. His laugh was so contagious and loveable, that I sang it often - and we always laughed. I don’t know why the joke never got stale, but it didn’t. So, every time I call him that now, I think of laughing with him. He may not remember, but it is a really special memory of mine. Dick was also very special to and with Joanie. He was her little brother too. Dick has always had a way with her, more than anyone except Dad. Even as a little guy, he used to be tolerant and loveable with his “big sister Joanie”. I thought that was so great that he could just give her all the kindness, patience and love that she needed. I was impressed that he just seemed to know that she needed him to be that way. Fred loved Dick too. I went away to college when Dick was about 5, so I didn’t see a lot of their interaction as bigger kids. But, I was always impressed with the brother bond that they had. Fred was 11 years older than Dick but they always seemed to have time for each other. I wish they could have continued being the pals they were. One of the photos I am sending has Dick in his “Sunday coat” and cowboy boots, leaning back in his lawn chair and wearing sunglasses. We always used to kid him about how he looked like a Movie Producer in the photo. I guess, even then, he was on track to produce films. Dick is such a talented guy - a great husband and father - but I had those few summers before I left where he was just plain fun for me. He was a great little boy and I’m proud to call him my brother. I love you Dick, Barb
9: Dear Dick - HAPPY BIRTHDAY! We first met in the summer of 1972. I came to Minnesota for Fred’s wedding. You were 11 and were already a great young man. In the summer of 1974, I was in Minnesota again when Barb and I got married. You were 13 and one of the groomsmen. A few years later, when Laura was 4, I remember all of us being in Chicago for your college graduation from Northwestern. That was a fun day for everyone! Each of these times have added to your lifetime experiences, and have helped make you the great person you are today. I was there to share in those memories, and to watch you grow up to be a successful person with a family and memories of your own. Fifty is the new 25! You are on the threshold of many more good times to come – enjoy them all! Love, John | Happy Birthday Little Brother!!! Love Joanie
10: One of my earlier memories Dick is when the whole family attended your college graduation. I remember being in that huge place and being so young, and not having a clue as to what I was doing there. Grandma kept pointing out where you were in the crowd, but needless to say since you all wore a black cap and gown I couldn't begin to find you. But I remember meeting up with you afterward for pictures and being so glad to see you! Not long after that, (I think these are in the right order) one of the summers that my parents and I spent a few weeks in Chicago, I remember my mom being on the phone with you and she was telling me to wave out the window because your office building was across the way and that you could see us. Once again, I was young and still couldn't find you when you were being pointed out to me! Seems there's a pattern here! :) I loved all the summers that we had at Grandma and Grandpa's house especially in the summer when we would all go swimming. You were such a great sport always being willing to go swimming with Lisa, Michael and me...I remember you throwing us in the air and us crashing in the water...it was the best. I remember you always asking me to play my violin and you always enjoying my playing, and when I was done playing you would always ask to try and you never understood why you couldn't sound like I did when I played....that always made me feel so good, it was such a great way to give a young child a compliment! It was so much fun when my parents and I came to visit you and Jill and we got to sleep in the downstairs apartment of your friend. It was such a funny experience......the guy's cat sprung a leak in his water bed and to a nine year old this was quite amusing! That was the same trip that you showed us how to ride the metro and to this day I remember thinking how cool you were that you could wiz us around the city to easily. I loved your wedding...I was twelve and that was such a huge memory for me. Such a simple moment from that weekend was I remember being in the car with Jill and pulling up next to you at a stoplight, as we were all headed somewhere together, and you two rolled down your windows and she asked you, (pretending you were a stranger), if you wanted to get married tomorrow and you said, "why not"...I remember at twelve being able to appreciate how cute that was and I can happily admit that my marriage is just as cute! :) Though there are many more memories, I must admit that I loved getting to show off our precious Paige to you when she was only a few weeks old...you coming out here to meet her was the best! And though you may not know it, you gave her her nickname that to this day has stuck...Paigie We hope you have the happiest birthday Uncle Dick and we wish we were there to celebrate with you! Love, Laura | I wanted to pass on some precious and random memories that always make me smile about my sweet Uncle Dick!!
11: Happy Birthday Uncle Dick! I hope you have a wonderful 40th birthday wait, what? It can’t be! Is it really happy 50th birthday?!? I still remember going to your college graduation! In fact that’s one of my favorite pictures; mainly because of my stylish blue and pink striped dress I was wearing, which perfectly complimented my bowl-cut hair do. Well, happy birthday regardless of your actual age. Remember, you’re only as old as you feel; but in your case, with three teenagers, that age might actually be higher than 50! Seriously though, I wish you all the best for today and the next 50 years. Even though we don’t see each other very often, I still think of you often and love you very much. Take care and have a VERY HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!! Love, your favorite niece named Lisa who lives in Minnesota
12: Dick, There is a theory called the butterfly effect. Essentially, it states that a butterfly can flap its wings in Australia and create a hurricane in Texas. Each molecule of air interacts with another and no event, action or even thought stands alone. At the risk of calling you a butterfly or causing a hurricane across the planet, you did create something quite magical. This magic continues to unfold on a daily basis and will continue to cascade long after you and I are gone. You introduced me to Mary. We created 3 incredible children. Emily has a full scholarship to Lawrence University and is an accomplished singer. Her voice has touched thousands and spread joy to people from Illinois to South Africa. She toured an orphanage of AIDS children and created a relationships that will last a lifetime. Her relationship with her friends and her sister brought a shy girl to audition for the school play and earn a duet. Lauren is a brilliant student, avid runner and one of the most gracious kids in her school. She befriends the less popular kids and continues to excel in extra-curricular activities. She will no doubt be a doctor, captain of industry or the national director of the Peace Corps. She will influence hundreds of thousands of people and probably save a life or two in her lifetime. Jack has become a semi-pro longboarder and is the only boy to carry on the Crowe name. His children and their children may go on to cure cancer or shift the political landscape of a town, state or country. Dick, while you didn't educate or raise my children, it was because of your introduction of Mary to me, that these three special people are in the world today...making a difference in the world in a positive manner. They make us all laugh with joy, cry with admiration and smile with pride. They are change agents of the next generation. Because of you. I am and always shall be, your friend. Doug Crowe
13: Dear Dick, Where do I begin to tell you how honored I am to be writing to you? Although we haven't been in contact in quite sometime, that does not diminish the love I feel for you and the smile that comes to my face whenever I think of you! So, HAPPY 50TH BIRTHDAY, DICK!!!!! Wow, where does the time go? It seems like just yesterday that we (your harem!) were lying on the beaches in Hawaii drinking those little umbrella drinks! Can you believe it's been almost 30 years since we were having more fun than any employee should be allowed, while soaking up the sun with all our NAR pals? What a wonderful experience that was, and I loved it so much that I've been back twice (once with Doug when I was pregnant with Emily and for my 50th birthday with Doug and the kids!) Not only were you one of the nicest people I've ever worked with, but you were a true professional; always making quality videos for those unappreciative realtors (we can say that now!) Although you were the youngest member of the group, you certainly acted more professional than most (please don't take that as an insult; it's just the rest of us were nowhere near your level of maturity!) Of course, I am most grateful that we worked together because that's how I met Doug. If it weren't for you we probably would never have met or I might not have given him the time of day (your opinion always meant so much to me!) It's hard to believe that it's been almost 27 years since our first meeting and 25 years since our first date. Fast forward and I am blessed with the 3 most wonderful children on the planet (I know you would argue that point, but that's a good thing!) Emily, Jack and Lauren are the most important people in my life and I am so honored to be their mother. They are truly an inspiration and I know that they have touched and will impact many peoples' lives in a positive way. Motherhood has been the most important job I've ever had, and I cherish each and every moment of the time I am blessed to spend with them. I have you to thank for that fateful introduction to your friend that has led me to the greatest happiness I could ever imagine! I am so grateful to you, Dick, and know that the world is a better place because of these 3 very special young people. You were so instrumental in their being a part of this crazy but wonderful world in which we live! Although our paths don't cross these days, please know that I think of you fondly and that you are always welcome in my home! I hope that you have a fabulous 50th (I'm sure that Jill will make it so; she's such a special lady!) and many more to come. Love always, Mary McConville-Crowe
14: Dick -- Happy birthday, my old friend! Though we are, in a sense, brothers at heart (Minnesotans, Wildcats, Greek, RTF, who are cooler than all get-out and married beautiful women far above our station, I will go to my grave regretting that but for a “Party with the Skulls!” poster that seems to have confused you, we might have even been fraternity brothers. Of course, at age fifty, you are well on your way to partying eternally with skulls, but then I am two years ahead of you on that morbid journey. My memories of those days are perhaps the most vivid memories of my life. For some reason I don’t remember too much about my undergraduate days at NU, and even less about high school, but I remember my graduate days at NU (which overlapped with your undergraduate career) very vividly. I remember all those Studio 22 productions we did together, waiting in lines for movies, hanging out at Yesterday’s, battling with that SMTPE time code editor in the basement of Annie Mae Swift, and friends who (like you) I see far too seldom, or never: Paul Stauts, Ralph Belliveau, Jim Ring, Doug Crowe, and of course Niederman. (Well, actually, I do see Niederman quite a bit, at least in relative terms. We were in Chicago for the Bar/Bat Mitzvah of the Nieder-twins last fall.) Decorum precludes me from saying anything about Chi Omega or its members here. Give me a call sometime! The greatest car I will even own is a long-since-extinct Honda Civic, original vintage, that was christened “Elvira” thanks to a cut-out you gave me. That hunk of metal became the terror of Chicago as well as Evanston, but is probably the coolest ride I’ve ever had. It once since more over-heated than cool though: in its later days there was a hole in the radiator and I had to carry jugs of water in the car and stop every four miles to replenish the tank. Why do I remember those days so well? I think it’s because my friends from that time, and you especially, were much more like me than anyone I knew before then. You shared my love of movies and television , but you also came from a similar background that meant we understood each other instantly (but I hate to presume equality: Wayzata and Blake are, of course, much higher up the social echelon than Edina and the now-extinct Edina East High School. So, it was quite an act of charity on your part to associate with likes of me).
15: You will be interested to know that you have also had an indelible effect on my professional life. Although I never did get the opportunity to work with your father at Art Instruction Schools, it was a great joy to have gotten to have known him and your mom, and what I saw at AIS gave me a lot of ideas for how higher ed could better serve its students, ideas I still apply today, so many years later. And, as you know, I did end up moving back to Minnesota. You will also find interesting the following section from my “curriculum vitae” (or “CV”) which is the fancy long-form résumé that we use in academia and that documents everything we’ve ever done: 6. Olson, S. (1989). Job Corps: The plumbing trade. Professionally produced training video script. For the Home Builders Institute, Washington, D.C. Dick Phillips, producer. 5.Olson, S. (1989). Job Corps: The landscaping trade. Professionally produced training video script. For the Home Builders Institute, Washington, D.C. Dick Phillips, producer. 4. Olson, S. (1989). Job Corps: The carpentry trade. Professionally produced training video script. For the Home Builders Institute, Washington, D.C. Dick Phillips, producer. 3.Olson, S. (1986). Coping with rejection. Professionally produced scripts and materials for the RITE Program of the National Association of Realtors (continuing Realtor education program). Dick Phillips, producer. So, what this means is that you have also given me “street cred” (or what passes for it in rural Minnesota) with business and industry leaders who can tell that I know something about their world. We have these videos in the basement and I am compelled to go and watch them. Kelley and I owe you a great deal, not least our marriage, which you helped inspire and facilitate. You more than anyone in my life were there at the founding of my relationship with Kelley. My friends from my undergraduate days at NU had associated me with a different woman, one who would not have been a very good life partner for me, and they had all departed from Evanston for the next phase of their lives, so when I met you my life was rebooting in many ways, and you were there, and you were encouraging, and the rest is living history. Kelley and I recently celebrated our 25th wedding anniversary (by renewing our vows in Nisswa), so you really got us off on the right foot. (I hope that you got our letter about that last October, by the way?) So, have an awesome birthday! Go out there and Party with the Skulls, Man! Love Scott!
16: Dear Dick, Happy 50th! How did this ever happen? I have many fond memories, and one is when you began my illustrious acting career by casting me in a drawing commercial for your Father's school. We went to dinner and you ordered your signature 7-Up with bitters. After dinner you said "let's go get some dessert." We went to the grocery store cookie aisle and you went "Mmm, yummm, Fig Newtons..mmmm." I thought, is he for real? Fig Newtons for dessert No ice cream? No chocolate?" I'd never had Fig Newtons before but they were indeed yummy. They were like you, good and good for you. We need a dose! So come visit! We miss you. Have a happy happy year. Love to Jill Kelley | I think, but I'm not sure, that Dick was introduced to me either in a class we had together, or by my room-mate at Willard, Doug Crowe. There are many memories of time together, but what stuck with me most was a time when one of our professors, Dr. Lou Castelli, was denied tenure. Lou was the faculty sponsor of a production group on campus called STUDIO 22. Well, with this news - Lou determined to look for a new job out of academia, and could no longer sponsor Studio 22. Jim Cozza was the "President" and the board followed Lou's guidance all through those early years. I became president in 1981-1982, and Dick was on the board (I think). We shifted the emphasis from a single large feature length production each year to smaller, student written and directed productions. It was quite successful, even with the security of trying to establish something on campus without a faculty sponsor. We met directly with the Dean (Roy Wood) and made outrageous requests for funds and production liability insurance, etc. The Dean was a good supporter of our group, and Dick took those relationships to a new professional level, ensuring success for Studio 22. Last spring (or two), I returned to Northwestern for the first time in 30 years. My roommate Tom Astle and I decided to sneak into our dorm, Willard Residential College, and see our old room. The door was open - and two students were inside with their parents. We asked if we could look inside. The parents asked us what we studied... "Radio-Television-Film" we said. With a smirk, the father asked if we actually found work in our field of study. I think they were trying to make a point with their son. " Sure." Said Tom Astle. Me too. Tom told them that he was a screenwriter in Hollywood, and worked on television series and now features. I told them I was a director of commercials and documentaries at a small production company in Philadelphia. The son was relieved at our response. We then told them that we were part of starting a production group on campus called Studio 22. "Studio 22. I'm in theater, but I just finished a production for Studio 22 last weekend!" I have to say, I am more interested in my classmates now than I ever have been. I'm proud of everyone's character and lucky to count myself among them. Dick, you and Jill have built a rich and fulfilling life together, which I hope to share again. We've been out of touch for years. But if there is any legacy we can be proud of at Northwestern, in addition to the continuing richness of relationships with substantial people, I think that helping found Studio 22 - and keeping it alive through those earliest years is something Dick and I can uniquely share... and be proud of. I know that I'm proud to know him. Happy Birthday Dick, Love, Tom Ervin
17: Dick: I can't imagine a more positive person that you. So many of us were so full of sturmendrang -- and there you were, saying, hey, it's all good -- with a glint of irony. And for the most part, it was all good. Quite simply, it was just a pleasure to be in his orbit. If I could beam to DC to hang out every now and then, I would. Happy Birthday Dick, Much Love, Patty | Dear Dick, At the time of a fiftieth birthday one must ask one self.... Self: How the hell I am doing? However, this question isn't as simple as... My hair still looks good or I can see my toes... The question really is "did I take care of business and did I do all the chaotic but non-life threatening activities one should do in their life up to the big old number 50?" I will give you my report for the college years... As a casual observer and a frequent companion, taking in account my often altered perspective, you could have done better. There I said it. Yes, you participated in a variety of crazy shoots, midnight screenings and ridiculously obscure discussions of really awful cinema but where was the edgier behavior that one really expects of their college years... Going in Drag to a frat party or having a really questionable girl friend (at least we thought they were a girl) or running naked through the campus. Maybe you did that but I wasn’t around-- the running around naked thing made me feel uncomfortable. Your made it throuigh those years in a rather "reasonable" way at least by my standards. You were a good and kind and thoughtful friend-- Wait, I have to yawn, but what is needed for the next fifty is some crazy crap. So your charge is: go embarrass yourself is some spectacular manner and then send me pictures... Mohawk, yellow sports car, mosh pit... Be creative. YOU'R FIFTY, GO DO SOMETHING CRAZY! My own injuries from my fiftieth have finally healed and all the lawsuits settled and outside of the limp, no permanent damage was done... And it was worth every minute. SO, have a great birthday, congrats on making it this far and live long and prosper. (I stole that last line but you know that...) Much love, MN
18: I am sure you will hear yourself described as the Renaissance Man by other members of the family and you certainly have my vote on that. You are the “go to” guy, whether it be laying tile, taking a splinter out of one of the kids foot, cooking dinner or answering an encyclopedic question that none of knows. In your wonderful unassuming manner you have it all. Your devotion and care to Jill and the kids is more than evident as well as your warmth towards me. My visits are always well received and and you take me in as just another person to watch over. I am running out of descriptive adjectives to add to your outstanding profile but know, you are very much appreciated and loved. The very best to you today and always and looking forward to sharing our birthdays together in a couple of weeks. Much love, Poppy | "Dick. you could have been on the mantle"! | Dear Dick, With the flurry of these family landmark birthday wishes,yours is certainly the easiest. The reason being there is a plethora of wonderful things to say about you. If I were to go through the complete list it would extend way beyond the allotted space. From day two (day one was before you married Jill) when I first met you it was nothing less than warm feeling and this is the guy for my “baby daughter”. My perception could not have been more correct. You are and always have been the perfect gentlemen, husband,father and son-in-law on the planet. In fact I say unequivocally, you are my best son-in-law!
19: Dick, Happy, happy birthday!! In a family with so many strong personalities (to say the least!), we are so blessed to have your patience and level-head, balance us all out :) I will never forget the incredible memories from growing up in yours and Jillie's beautiful home each summer when I was young. It means so much that you opened up your home to me for weeks on end, without a moment's hesitation. Thank you for all of the warmth and love you bring to the family. Jill, Zack, Halle and Gaby are so fortunate to have a husband and dad like you! You deserve the best birthday yet! Lots of love, Catherine | Dick- Happy 50th Birthday! So sorry we can't be there to celebrate with you. Wishing you all the best. Brad
20: For a Very Golden Occasion A tribute, reflections of the heart and expressions of love, You have often caused me to believe there *is* someone above, As I look at who you are, and what you've meant to me A perfect husband and incredible father is what I see! Being so much a part of your family has given pleasures replete Sharing so much and so many, has made life feel complete. As a Grammy, watching the kids as they grow and achieve I must thank you for the greatest gift I could possibly receive; Your values and ethics make me feel secure and proud And I love that you live them, not having to speak them aloud, Tho laid back and observing is dominant in your style Strength of character, purpose and humor are there all the while! Your uniquenesses in the role of "family man" are oft times profound Consistency, patience, and "cool" keep *all* feet on the ground,You create "teaching moments" where and whenever there's need Messages delivered with kindness and caring, knowing they'll be heeded;*St. Richard* is my pet name for you, vividly describing your being Always ready to listen, to help, to guide me and feel, without seeing! Your talent, creativity and shared wealth of knowledge, combined Have provided us with extensive experiences and expansive minds; But there's always that pause when one searches the mind Not knowing precisely...what you want or will find, Well! I found that *my* dreams for Jill's life have come true And that is precisely because she is married to you! Have a very happy birthday! Wishing you 50 more happy and healthy years! Love, Sue | You are the man of the hour, the one who’s got patience and power. You can do it all, and always seem to be on call. You are always there for the kids, Jill and even Gracie, when things can really get hectic and hasty. Your culinary skills are fine, but your cheery disposition is when you shine. You bring happiness and cheer to everyone you know, and your ever smiling face is always a glow. A poet I’m not— just wanted you to know that you’re loved a lot. Wishing you a wonderful 50th and many, many more to come. Love you, Aunt Carol | A POEM FOR DICK'S BIRTHDAY
21: See Dick turn 50. "What a great reason to celebrate,"!said Jane. "Yes, yes,"!said Alex, who loves a good birthday celebration. "Should we get some pointy birthday hats?"“ "Yes,"!said Jane. See Jane wear a silly hat. Hear Alex LOL. But Dick could not see the silly hat. Dick could not hear Alex laughing. He was too far away. "I know,"!Alex said with a sly smile. “Let's have cake and ice cream!”And so they did. And it was delicious. But Dick could not taste the cake and ice cream. He was too far away. So, they sang “Happy Birthday”as loud as they could. But Dick could not hear their singing from across so many miles (lucky Dick). So, Jane and Alex decided to write him a note to wish him the happiest birthday ever and tell him how very much he's loved. "We love you, Dick." they exclaimed. "We wish we could be with you to wear silly hats, eat cake and ice cream and help you blow out all those candles," Jane said. "And don't forget to make a BIG wish," added Alex. See Jane and Alex blowing 50 birthday kisses to Dick! xoxoxoxoxoxoxoxoxoxoxoxoxoxoxooxoxoxoxoxoxoxoxoxooxoxoxoxoxoxoxo Love, Janie and Alex | Dear Dick May your 50th birthday come with many hugs and kisses from your adoring family, a long peaceful nap, and a good ice cream cone. If you get two out of three of these.... you are a lucky man! Enjoy! Love, Noreen
22: Dick, My favorite memory of you was when we were in Poppy's pool -- in the deep end and you sang "Ten Minutes Ago" to Jilly and I knew then, that she had met her Prince Charming...and that is what you are...a Prince of a guy. We love you, Happy Birthday Heidi and Greg | Happy Birthday Dick! From the moment we met you we knew you were definitely "a keeper"! We wish you a wonderful 50th birthday with your wonderful loving family surrounding you. Many, many more happy birthdays! Love, Ruthie and David | Dear Dick, If truth be told, Bobby and I only really know you as filtered through Jill. We knew *about *you long before we actually *met* you. And now we *know *youmainly through her. From what we have been told and have observed ourselves, you are a greatbalance—or is that word "foil"-- for her. Your steadiness matches her drive. Your solid anchor is matched by her zeal for just getting it done. Your quiet tenderness is matched by her enthusiastic affection. Your video contributions even enhance her consulting work. The results of your partnership are abundantly displayed in the solid characters and many accomplishments of your three kids. It's hard to believe that the cousins in the family are turning fifty! We wish you long life and even greater happiness in the future. Love and Best Wishes Beth and Bobby | Dick, 50 years? I guess having 3 kids keeps you young. Whenever I hear people say that someone is "a good guy", I immediately think of you, the consummate "good guy". However, this is pretty understated for someone of your qualities as a loving and caring husband, father and family member. Have a great Birthday! Jon | Happy 50th Birthday Dick! I am so very grateful for the good fortune that we are now family ~ through those crazy spouses of ours Your love and caring and kindness are just a few of the many wonderful pieces of you that make it such a joy to be together (which of course is never often enough). I hope you have a wonderful celebration and here’s to many, many more delightful moments and celebrations yet to come. With love and hugs, Karen
23: Uncle Dick, To one of the kindest, sweetest men I know (who will also go see shoot-'em-up movies with me!): From the minute David and I plopped ourselves down into your world, you were there for us. As "Uncle Dick," you took David into your lives as if he were yours. As brother-in-law in Dick, you were there with helping hands whenever I needed an assist. You and Jill played, and continue to play an extraordinary role in David's life. I will never be able to thank you enough for that. The smiles of Jill and the kids are reflections of your goodness. That heart of yours is huge and wonderful and I am so honored to have a place in it! Love you much, Deb | Dick- Happy Birthday to a great Dad, and a great guy. We hope your 50th is the best ever. We love you! All The LA Herzog's | Uncle Dick, You have been a very important person to me for my whole life, and you set a very good example for me by being such a great father, husband, and uncle. You are like the "Big Freindly Giant", and you are one of the most kind hearted people i have ever met. I miss living so close by! Happy 50th! Love you lots, Little D | Hey Uncle Dick, Happy 50th birthday! I remember all those times you rubbed my smooth little face with your rough whiskers, and now I have whiskers of my own. I guess we're both getting old (hahaha). I've been doing a lot of video filming and editing and really like it. Maybe sometime when I come to DC you can give me some pointers, since you're the pro! Hope you have a great birthday and many, many more. Love, Alex
24: OUR FAMILY
26: Dick: When I met you, I knew I had met the man I wanted to marry. Was it your dapper style? Your old fashioned good manners? Your sweet gentle nature? Your ability to sing? Your good looks? That twinkle in your eyes? Or, was it the way you made me feel? Special, loved, important, safe -- secure? So many choices with a man like you. As I read these letters from your friends and family, I was not surprised by the themes of creativity, kindness, and integrity. You are all that and more. As your wife, I glow in your goodness. You are the calm to my storm, you are the right to my wrong, you are the sunshine to my rain... you get the drift. You bring balance, levity and love to our family every day. Without you, the children would not have learned to ride a bike, eat with a fork and knife, spell, add or subtract... or play board games. Tthey would be C students and they would not have a love for learning, or school as they all do. The kids and I, we are very lucky to have you. You keep the train moving every day. It starts with the 6:15 wake up and doesn't end until the last school paper is printed, the check for the event is cut, the appointment for the dentist, doctor, hair cuts, tryouts, practices, and tutoring are made. You manage the calendar, and make sure me and mom know where to be when. You make the beds, bake the cookies, cook the meals, nurse the sick, do the laundry, tend the wounds (both emotional and physical) and applaud the daily accomplishments of our children. And you do these things with ease --- better than any parent I know.
27: You help make the memories our kids will remember forever. The parks, the vacations, the pumpkin patch, the holidays. I also love that you will watch a good sappy movie with me, sing a Broadway tune, and name a celebrity or movie when no one else can think of who it was. When I tell people our story, that we have worked together for most of our time together --people say "I could never work with my wife, or husband." And me, I couldn't imagine not working with you. You bring our work to life, you are the heart and soul of what we do and I am inspired by and in awe of your many creative talents. I am your biggest fan and you have always been my most avid supporter and cheerleader. Thank you for loving me. For sticking with me and for always seeing me in the light that you do. I am honored to be your wife, your partner, your friend. I look forward to the many more years of stuff we have ahead of us. Zack a rising Senior, Gaby and Halle the teenage years and you and I muddling through it all together. I love you very much Dick, now and forever Jillie | Woof Woof thank you for taking care of me I love you.... love Gracie
28: Daddy: Happy Birthday! I cannot believe you're 50, you old geezer! I have to say that you are most likely the greatest dad that a boy could ask for. I love all of the random little stories that you tell me about your life and the R-rated movies that you have spoiled for me about people melting off a layer of their skin... ALL of which I can remember perfectly. You and I have had so many wonderful times together. Driving over the train tracks to karate, watching you laugh/cry from watching RV and 40 Year Old Virgin, racing go-carts in Cape Cod, and even taking me to get my actual driving license all the way up in Hagerstown. I truly love every moment that we've had together, all the stories that we have shared, and all the laughs that you have cried during. I will cherish each and every one of them forever. I love you tons daddy! Love, ZACK
29: Daddy, HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!! I love you more than anything. You (and mommy) are the MOST important people in my life. I can not have asked for a better dad than you. I apreciate everything you do for me from making me breakfast to driving me to soccer practice. I have soooo many memories that i have shared with you and our whole family. I will never forget going to the pumpkin patch and you chasing us in the hay like a monster, you have me and halle litterally dance on the celling, picking up bananas and many more memories. I love you so much and i hope you have a wonderful birthday because you deserve it for everything you have done for all of us. I hope you enjoy your book. I love you!!!!! <3 Love, Gaby | GABY
30: Daddy, Happy Birthday! I love you so much!! I want to thank you for always being there for me, making my breakfast everyday, loving me, and caring about me. I appreciate it a lot. I will never forget the time you totally lost control watching RV, or all the times you sang and danced in public! You give the best back massages and all the other little and big things you do for me everyday. They all mean so much to me. I hope you enjoy your day, you deserve it! Happy 50th Birthday Daddy! XOXOX Halle (Mouse) | HALlE
31: Dear Dick, now you turn 50! Wow! Its been more than 10 years, when I first met you and I liked you right away. When Jill and me came from the airport, you were playing downstairs with the kids and you had that big smile on your face which made me feel right at home. You spent my first week in the US with me and the kids - very patiently I have to say after I couldn't really communicate that well in the beginning (sign-language is quite a useful thing ;-). You made me feel like a part of your family from day one. You showed me around, where to get the best cup of coffee and muffins, tought me how to drive a car with automatic, gave me historical information about Rockville and D.C. and besides being a great Dad to your kids you became a very good friend to me. I can't thank you enough for what you have done for me and I surely hope, that we will see each other again very soon. I think you are the best Dad that Zack, Halle and Gaby can ask for, a wonderful husband to Jill and a great friend and "other" Dad to me. I wish you a wonderful birthday and many more to come! To the next 50! xo Libby
32: Dear Dick, I hope you have an amazing birthday, eat lots of cake and soak in all the love from your friends and family. You have been a great husband and father and you have so much to be proud of! Celebrate and have a Happy Birthday! Love Mara | A Haiku for Dick You had me at hi Gentle, kind, friendly, and warm A gem and a mensch Wishing you much joy, laughter, and love on your 50th birthday and always... Deborah | Dear Dick, First of all, happy birthday! I hope you have an amazing and relaxing day while everyone around you submits to your every whim and shamelessly compliments you. Speaking of which There is no denying that you are the kindest, jolliest, most understanding and genial man I have ever met. You have been there for me for many, many years, and I cannot appreciate your support enough. You never fail to lighten the mood of a room or quickly mend a negative situation. As a surrogate daughter in the Phillips/Herzog household, I have been lucky enough to be extended the unconditional love that you hold for your own children. I appreciate this honor greatly. Your smiley greetings never cease to brighten my day. I know that you will never lose this optimism and compassion for others, and I can only aspire to be the same way. Thank you for your kindness and wonderful hugs, and I hope you have a very, very happy birthday. You deserve it! Much love, Ali
33: Happy 50th Dick! From celebrating on the Mall to the MTV Ball.movie nights before kids.holidays and other occasions with kids.looking forward to many, many more fun times together. Lots of love on your big day, Cindy, Richard & Matthew | Dick- Happy Birthday Buddy! Welcome to the 50 club! It's been great sharing wonderful times with you over the years - from your single days when you were dating Jill through marriage to buying your home to bringing your 3 beautiful children into the world. Jill couldn't have found a more kind hearted, supportive, and fun-loving husband and father to share her life with! We've enjoyed wonderful times with you and your and your amazing family over the years- lots of laughter and song! We cherish you buddy and are truly blessed be among your friends! We love you! Rich, Debbie, Nikki, Tammy, Lauren and Michael | April 1961 was the time - Dick Phillips' birth the event Between then and now, he's become quite the gent There's salt'n'pepper hair and a more wrinkles to come It's his kind heart I cherish though he remains quite handsome For many years, Dick with Jill had been our steady movie date Zack, Gaby and Halle arrived so less frequent of late I miss "our regular time" but life continues apace Talk of our kids now fills much of the conversation space All the while, Dick is a calm and caring presence Steady, yet with loads of effervescence I love hanging with Dick, he's so cool and current Yet his comfort seems highest as Jill's husband and G/H/Z's parent HAPPY BIRTHDAY, DICK, with lots of love from Sam and Celeste | hey mr phillips, i just wanted to wish you a happy birthday and thank you for the grilled cheeses in the winter and the great conversations about movies. Love Neema!
34: Dick, You are one of the most welcoming, warmest people I know. You have always welcomed me into your home—making me dinner and breakfast, accepting late night arrivals, and putting up with my late-night convos with Jill—with open arms. The memory of you that most sticks out in my head is when I was in town for work and I was staying at his and Jill’s house. I had a proposal deadline and wasn’t able to start working on it until around 10 p.m. You were working on the same proposal, and also got a late start. I remember you made some coffee for us and we sat there typing away late into the night. I was at the kitchen table and you were at your little desk in the corner. I was so tired, but it was a little bit fun to know that someone else was in this too. You are always has such a calm presence. You have the ability to make everything seem okay and manageable, never losing your sense of humor. I admire that very much and strive to be a little bit more like you. Happy 50th Birthday, Dick! Hope you have a great celebration! Love Lisa (Matt,Charlie and Lily too) | From the Halls of Crystal City To the Shores of Silver Spring He will tell of warriors' battles With the things we cannot see First to know what words to use And to edit nice and clean We are proud to have Dick Phillips On the Real Warriors Team! When I first heard that the producer/editor on the campaign was the husband of the Project Manager, I remember thinking “Holy Crap! This is going to be a nightmare.” I can only say that I have never been more wrong in my LIFE. Your production and editing skills, while impressive, are dwarfed by your empathy, kindness and commitment to the project and the volunteers who make up its’ very beating heart. I love the fact that you agonize over every edit and worry about whether or not you are doing them justice – and by the way you always do! You never say “no,” even when the request is unreasonable, impractical and sometimes even a bit silly. And while you may never have met a deadline that you can’t come in just under or nudge just a little, I never have to worry that the end product won’t be worth waiting for it is always simply amazing. I hope you know how appreciated you are and that your work is changing lives for the better. Jill has brought some amazing people into my life, but I must admit you are my absolute favorite! -- Your work wife, Julie
35: Dick Phillips, whom I alternately call Ricardo, Richard, (as in REESHARD as the silly French say it), I wish I had some embarrassing stories to tell, but I don’t. I have been working with Dick since 1996 as a freelancer, and I adore him. He and Jill were the only clients invited to my wedding. It was on one of our longer jobs together that I met John (thanks a LOT, Dick). For the first few years I worked for Dick, he had one son and Jill. His attention to details and a purposeful, methodical march toward the execution of a video shoot was the polar opposite of mine. I always got the job done, but had a preposterously sunny attitude about a shoot. If 75% of the job was nailed down by the first shoot day, I would get the rest done as we went along. This initially drove Dick crazy, until I pulled a tree house out of thin air, one day. From that day forward, any time I disappeared from the set, and some one would ask where I was. Dick would say, with a smile, Peggy is off working her magic.. THEN, the twins were born, and Dick’s office no longer looked like a well organized cathedral library. THANK YOU GIRLS!!!!!! One time, in the course of 16 years, Dick actually got mad at me. I was shocked...actually stunned. The best part was, I was right. It took Dick a few phone calls to notice the chill in my voice. He asked me . I said "Dick, in 15 years, I have given you a THOUSAND reasons to bite my head off and you never did. This wasn’t one of them." We had a great laugh over that one.. Then of course, there was the famous night that we drank lots of tequila and challenged each other in a pole dance competition OK, I MADE THAT PART UP. Dick is truly one of the kindest, charitable, thoughtful, insightful people I know, and I feel very blessed to be in his orbit. Now, if I could just find the picture of him wearing bunny ears. I even let him call me Margaret on occasion and that is BIG. HAPPY BIRTHDAY DICK!!! Love, Peggy | Dear Dick, First I would like to congratulate you on making it to your fiftieth birthday. Welcome to the club. As I write this letter I can see your smiling face that I have enjoyed throughout the years that I have known you. Working with you is always a pleasant and enjoyable experience; your presence has an ameliorating quality. Your kindness permeates as well as your ability to inspirit those around you. I shall now move away from the mushy sentiments and get down to the nitty gritty. We busted a gut when Jill told us the story of the time you were frustrated with her and your best retort was, “you’re your.. A piece of work”. We lower earthlings would have been X rated, but not you, saint Dick. The first time I saw you mad; I was so astonished I had to amass other opinions to confirm my initial assessment. We all agreed it was a blue moon occurrence, and to witness this momentous event was exceptional. Do you remember? That irritating actor from New York who could not, did not, remember his lines, it was agony and went on for hours. The tin man had it going on when he said: “that a heart is not judged by how much you love, but by how much you are loved by others”. Happy Birthday Dick!!!! Just Remember: "The older the fiddler, the sweeter the tune." Best, Edna
36: Happy Birthday Dick !! Mazel Tov from all the Allens. The “IM Systems Video Division” would never have succeeded without you. Though only credited as the director you really were the center of the project. Your talent and creativity (and your very patient tutoring and mentoring the naive, if not innocent, producer) is the reason we were able to achieve what we did in those 10 years. Thank you for all of that effort but even more thank you for your friendship. Happy happy happy 50th and many many many wishes for continued health and happiness. Fondly, Robbie Allen (and Richard and Richard and Greg and Rose and Rachel !) | Happy 50th Birthday to my best first boss ! Thank you for being a wonderful mentor and teaching me so much about video production. You are such a nice person and I was lucky to work for you. Very Best, Hallie | I had heard about Dick for some time before meeting him. From his description, I pictured someone fearful of commitment, overconfident, and perhaps someone who looked like that creepy guy that you see on Match.com ads. I couldn't have been more wrong. Dick has an eternal twinkle in his eye that let's you know how wonderful he is before you even talk to him. Unflappable, smart, and talented, I've never seen him lose his cool. Happy Birthday! Love Nancy
38: Traditions, Trips and More