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Phyllis was born on January 26, 1930 to Delbert and Beatrice (Ritchie) Buxton.

She attended Grand Rapids public schools, graduating from South High in 1948, lettering in archery. She completed her education earning both a Bachelor’s degree and Master of Education from Western Michigan University. She taught in Battle Creek Public Schools.

In 1957, she wed George Coon. The couple departed immediately for Bentwaters, England and taught for a year at the Air Force Department School. Returning to Michigan, Phyllis taught in the Portage and Royal Oak school systems before becoming a homemaker and mother. She lived in Illinois, Indiana, and New York prior to settling in Troy, Michigan. She resided in Troy for many years, raising her family and had a career in real estate. Phyllis worked for various political causes and campaigns, and was involved in many organizations, especially ones close to her English/Scottish heritage.

Everywhere she lived she attended the Episcopal Church, often serving on the ECW, Choir, and alter guild. She was a lifetime member of the American Legion Auxiliary.

She enjoyed traveling and visited approximately thirty countries, returning to England several times. However, her favorite place and second home was the Ritchie Woodlands area of Gun Lake which was founded by her grandparents Mark and Mary Ritchie.
She was a wonderful, doting mother and friend to her daughter. Mary Ellen (Coon) Gaikema, and son-in-law, David Gaikema. She is survived by them, grandsons, Mac (Taylor) Gaikema, and Joseph Gaikema; along with her great grandson, Owen Gaikema; and several cousins.

A small service and internment will be held at Robbins Cemetery in Yankee Springs Township/Gun Lake. Donations may be sent to Emmanuel Episcopal Church in Hastings or to any Covid-19 relief.

To send a message of sympathy to the family, sign Phyllis’ online guest book, or to share a favorite memory, please visit:

Cremation arrangements are entrusted to Michigan Cremation & Funeral Care, Grand Rapids, (616) 452-3006, honored providers of Veterans Funeral Care.



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1 Condolence

  1. Tanner Buxton on October 8, 2021 at 1:12 pm

    Hello I was just looking through my family history and i think this is either my great grandma or my great great grandma I am a Buxton and i know i am somehow related to her, i am very interested in learning about my family history because my family doesnt know it that well, just thought this was cool and interesting, and I give my Condolences.

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