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Phyllis Zrembski

March 13, 1935 - August 9, 2014
Canton, MI



Tuesday, August 12, 2014
2:00 PM to 8:00 PM EDT
Turowski Life Story Funeral Homes
Canton, West of Sheldon
45100 Warren Rd.
Canton, MI 48187
(734) 453-3008

Rosary service at 7:00pm

Driving Directions


Wednesday, August 13, 2014
11:00 AM EDT
St. John Neumman
44800 Warren Rd
Canton, MI 48187

Instate 10:30am until mass begins.


At the family's request memorial contributions are to be made to those listed below. Please forward payment directly to the memorial of your choice.

Multiple Myeloma Research Foundation
Web Site

Season's Hospice
Web Site


Below is the contact information for a florist recommended by the funeral home.

(734) 421-3567

Life Story / Obituary


With a snap of her fingers and a humorous perspective on the day’s events, Phyllis M. Zrembski was a woman who had lived through many changes, both in the world at large and in her own personal life. She understood the pain of great loss and the joy of lifelong love. She had seen the destruction of a World War and the triumph of a man on the moon. Her experience gave her a unique perspective that she was able to share with others.

In the 1930s, life wasn’t easy. Millions suffered crippling unemployment during the Great Depression and it became apparent that Hitler was strengthening Germany once again. People found a way to escape the bleakness of the time by listening to Big Band music and radio shows. Despite so many being strapped for cash, people still loved going to the movies, especially comedies like You Can’t Take It With You and epics like Gone with the Wind.

As the world was keeping an eye on events in Europe, Roy and Gertrude Deufel were looking forward to the birth of their first child. Their baby girl Phyllis arrived on March 13, 1935, in Chicago. Roy had a job with Ford Motor Company in Dearborn, Michigan, and Phyllis grew up there. When she was around four, she became a big sister and little Mary Sharon suddenly made young Phyllis’ life much more interesting. Their mother Gertrude managed their Dearborn home.

Growing up, Phyllis loved to swim. She was privileged to have two sets of grandparents that she enjoyed. She looked forward to visits with her grandparents in Chicago and going to Walled Lake with Grandma Taylor.

When it was time for high school, Phyllis attended St. Alphonsus High. When she was fifteen, she went to a bonfire with some friends. She met a young man a few years older than she named Eugene. He expressed an interest in spending more time with her and she didn’t mind that idea. Phyllis graduated from St. Alphonsus in 1953. She married that high school sweetheart shortly thereafter in a wedding Mass at St. Alphonsus Church in Dearborn. It was the first step on a long road of joy and struggles, but they were committed to traveling it together.

Phyllis was a woman with a variety of skills. She had worked as a seamstress, a sales clerk, and at secretarial jobs. She also raised seven children and managed a bustling household. There was never a dull moment in the Zrembski home and Phyllis found ways to see the humor in circumstances that came her way. As the children grew up and had children of their own, Phyllis looked forward to holidays with her family and loved watching the grandkids play and grow.

Sadly, after forty-one years of marriage, Phyllis was widowed in 1994. She missed Eugene dearly, and found solace in caring for her pets, especially Sadie, and in spending time with her growing family. She loved to travel and enjoyed vacations throughout the United States as well as parts of Europe. She enjoyed catching up with friends and relatives and helped plan reunions for her high school and family.

Phyllis enjoyed serving with the St. Damian Altar Sodality and the Funeral Lunch Club at St. Williams Church. She participated in several bowling leagues over the years.

Through all of life’s ups and downs, one thing was certain. Phyllis loved her family. She leaves them with sweet memories and the assurance that they were the most important part of her life. She will be missed.

Phyllis passed away peacefully on Saturday, August 9, 2014. She was preceded in death by her husband of forty-one years, Eugene; a daughter, Barbara; granddaughter Melissa; and parents, Roy and Gertrude Deufel.

She is survived by her children: Ann Marie Mann (Bill), James (Sandra), Karen Ellis (James), John (Elizabeth), Michael (Catherina), and Katherine Pribble (Timothy); seventeen grandchildren; seventeen great-grandchildren; her sister, Mary Sharon Schlaff (Jerome); and many loving nieces and nephews.

Family will receive friends on Tuesday, August 12, from 2 – 8 p.m. at the Neely-Turowski Funeral Home, 45100 Warren Road (West of Sheldon), with a rosary service at 7 p.m. A Mass of Christian burial will be held Wednesday, August 13, at 11:00 a.m. at St. John Neumann Catholic Church, 44800 Warren Road (west of Sheldon), instate at 10:30 a.m. until Mass begins. Interment will be at Wixom Cemetery. Please visit www.TurowskiLifeStory.com where you may sign Phyllis’ online guestbook or share a favorite memory.