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Phyllis McCarroll Braswell

January 24, 1947 May 24, 2018
Phyllis McCarroll Braswell
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Obituary for Phyllis McCarroll Braswell

Waynesville - Phyllis McCarroll Braswell took her last breath on May 24, 2018 surrounded by family at home. She was 71 years old. Although she dealt with illness in recent years, she enjoyed a full, rich, hilarious, and happy life through its end.

Phyllis is survived by her son, Matthew McCarroll, daughter-in-law, Jennifer McCarroll, and granddaughters Ada and Genoa of Murphysboro, Illinois; her daughter, Meredith McCarroll, son-in-law, Jeff Christmas, and grandsons Jasper and Townes of Portland, Maine; and her brother, Steve Milner, and sister-in-law, Ann Milner, of Carthage, North Carolina. Phyllis was preceded in death by her parents, George and Lucille Milner, and her husband, Kelley Braswell.

Phyllis was born in Waynesville in 1947, the daughter of George Milner and Lucille Hoosier Milner. Along with her brother, she enjoyed a childhood surrounded by family. She graduated from Waynesville Township High in 1965. Many of the friendships that she built in high school were life-long. After adventures with friends, living in New York and Fort Lauderdale, she returned to Waynesville where she married and began her family.

Motherhood gave shape to Phyllis’ life. She was an active, engaged, supportive mother not only to her son and daughter, but filled that role informally to many of their friends. She helped build a rich community of families that were sustaining friendships throughout her life. Even as a single mother, she never missed a dance recital, a swim meet, or a band competition. She created a home that was warm and welcoming--filled with good music and delicious food, always with an open door.

Along with her first husband, Rick McCarroll, she helped work and save to form Mountain Builders, and she later owned and managed Gingko Properties. Phyllis volunteered for many years at Junaluska Elementary, both as school nurse and as a teacher’s aide. A constant reader, she was active with the Jug Wine and Cheese Book Club for many years, where she built enduring friendships.

Phyllis re-married Kelley Braswell, and together they travelled widely, explored deeply and lived life fully. They camped in the Rockies, sailed all through the Caribbean, and walked miles in Europe. They loved spending time with their kids that were building their lives away from North Carolina—especially relishing time with Jen Braswell and Jim McNicholas in their homes across the globe. The North Carolina Mountains were always home for Phyllis who loved hiking at Max Patch, picnicking at Water Rock Knob, or walking at Lake Junaluska. She taught her children about nature in the woods above their home--identifying wildflowers and trees, harvesting morels, and nurturing animals. She raised her children to enjoy the small things, to make time for watching sunsets, and to find the art in sharing a meal together. She was what she valued--kind, just, compassionate, witty, and fun.

Phyllis’ four grandchildren were her brightest light. She cooked, traveled, hiked, camped, sang, painted and laughed with them. Ada, Jasper, Genoa, and Townes shared a deep and easy relationship with their Nonna, and she lives on in each of them.

A celebration of Phyllis’ life will take place at 3:00 until 5:00 pm on Saturday, June 23, 2018 at Wells Events & Reception Center, 33 Wells Events Way in Waynesville.

In lieu of flowers, consider practicing kindness, refraining from judgment and infusing your life with humor in her honor. Donations may also be made in her memory to Planned Parenthood, 68 McDowell Street, Asheville, NC 28801 or The Southern Appalachian Highlands Conservancy, 372 Merrimon Avenue, Asheville, NC 28801.

To send flowers or a remembrance gift to the family of Phyllis McCarroll Braswell, please visit our Tribute Store.

Previous Events





3:00 PM 6/23/2018 3:00:00 PM - 5:00 PM 6/23/2018 5:00:00 PM
Wells Events & Reception Center

33 Wells Events Way
Waynesville, NC 28786

Wells Events & Reception Center
33 Wells Events Way Waynesville 28786 NC
United States

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