612th Tank Destroyer Battalion Association


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"Hold At All Costs"
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Origin of the Song TAPs

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Katherine “Tena” Phillips was born the daughter of Walter and Margaret (Siebert) Markwardt in Caldwell, Texas on March 23, 1923.  Katherine was received as a child & heir of God through Holy Baptism on February 03, 1924.  She was confirmed in the Christian faith at Our Redeemer Lutheran Church, Houston, TX in 1955, where she remained active & faithful in the church & school for these many years since. 

Katherine Markwardt & the late Travis Phillips were joined together as one-in-Christ through Holy Matrimony in Fayetteville, Texas on February 06, 1944.  This union was blessed with one endeared daughter, Vivian Kay.  (However, Tena claimed all the kids around and especially her Godchildren). 

Tena was on the Bowling League for many years, still serving until recently with official tasks; treasurer of Our Redeemer LWML for several years, member of Our Redeemer Stewardship Committee; served on the office committee helping the church secretary correlate newsletters (still driving to the main Post Office downtown to mail them, and, traditionally on the return trip would stop at Sonic for corn dogs and onion rings), making phone calls, collecting fundraiser offerings & mites (always setting an example with her own generosity); served on the Friendship Committee, helping with every funeral for bereaved church family members until she went into nursing care.  Tena still attended, and assisted with, her late husband, Travis Phillips' 612th Tank Destroyer Battalion reunions (in distant states).  Tena was always willing and capable.  Her loves were her family, her friends, her church & pastor, LWML, bowling, and the reunions.  She was loved by many and will be sorely missed.  Her legacy will live on. 

Katherine Phillips, after serving her Lord well for these many years, it has pleased Him to take her home to Himself and the mansion prepared for her on Monday, December 7, 2009 at the age of 86 yrs, 8 mo, 14 days.

Katherine Phillips leaves behind to await a joyful reunion in heaven ...  Daughter ....  Vivian Kay Ogrodowicz; and husband Alvin, Grandson ....  Travis Eugene Thetford, and wife, Sara, Granddaughter ....  Christina Johnson, and husband Steven, Grandchildren….  Jackson, Hannah and Audrey Thetford and Cameron Johnson. Numerous Godchildren, Hosts of Friends; Our Redeemer Church Family

Donations in memory of Katherine “Tena” Phillips may be sent in care of:

Beautiful Savior Lutheran Church

161 West Road

Houston, Texas 77037

Letters of condolence to Tena’s family may be sent to:

Vivian K. Thetford

103 Millstream

Houston, Texas 77060