PHYLLIS LEOLA BROOKS, more affectionately known as “Mommy,” was born to the late
Samual W. Brooks and Leola R. Brooks. She was raised on the Eastern Shore of Virginia
where she attended grade school and raised all 6 of her children.
Mommy was a wonderful provider who was no stranger to hard work. At an early age, she
moved to Connecticut for a few years until returning home and beginning her work in the
seafood industry. She was faithful to that job, until she retired. She retired from work, but she did
not retire from being a caretaker. Mommy would babysit her great grandchildren while her
granddaughter worked. You could walk in her home one day and she would have red curtains up,
and a week later she would have white curtains up. She would steam and press her curtains to
perfection. Let’s not forget the matching rugs and comforter sets. Mommy loved decorating her
home, watching Young and the Restless, Bold and the beautiful and the Price is Right. In her
words, “Victor Numen is something else.” Mommy didn’t indulge in what’s known as the finer
things in life. Mommy was content with serving God, family, cooking, soap operas, and riding
out. She found joy in those things.
Phyllis cared for her family with an unconditional love. Her dedication was made evident in
every life decision she made. She stayed close to her parents, while raising her own family.
When her children began raising their own families, she took on the proud role of “grandma.”
Her home was always open to her family, children, and friends (all of whom she loved to cook
for). They could always count on Mommy to fry pork chops smothered in gravy, friend white
potatoes, stewed tomatoes and those buttered yeast rolls. She would finish with these words,
“they gonna make you smack yo momma!” Phyllis was a well-timed comedic relief, but do not
step out of line, because would tell you, “Don’t make me squeeze your big nose” or “don’t make
me mark you off my book.” If Mommy didn’t call you a name and feed you, you missed out on
the best side of her. It was all done with love! Her family is blessed that she’s passed down her
love and her recipes through her granddaughters.
Many years ago, Phyllis, decided to live her life for Jesus and she NEVER turned back. She was
a born again, sanctified, and God-fearing woman who lived what she believed. She traveled to
church with her sister, Doris and daughter, Shirley. Nothing made her prouder than watching her
children and grandchildren answer the call to ministry. Her testimony was always, “can’t nobody
do me like Jesus.”
She was preceded in death by her daughters, Tammy Stiles and Willie May Brooks.
She is survived by two sisters, Doris Miller of Cape Charles, Virginia and Martha Ann Sellers of
Portsmouth, Virginia; one brother, Bo Jack Brooks of Cape Charles, Virginia; four children,
Shirley Ames (Cecil) of Kiptopeke, Virginia, Johnnie Brooks of Cape Charles, Virginia, Frank
Brooks (Gwendolyn) of Norfolk, Virginia, William Andre Hickman of Cape Charles, Virginia;
seventeen grandchildren, one special grandchild, Samira Brooks-Spady (Kent) of Cape Charles,
Virginia; Ayden Quintana, who she loved and adored as one of her own grandchildren, and a
host of great grandchildren, great-great grandchildren, nieces, nephews, and friends.
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