Phyllis Coats Benson

January 3, 1950 - January 11, 2022
Phyllis Coats Benson


Phyllis Coats Benson age 72 of Wilmington, NC passed away peacefully at her home on Tuesday, January 11, 2022.

Phyllis was born on January 3, 1950 in Smithfield, NC to the late Geneva Roberts Coats and William Carlie Coats.

In her youth, she worked the family farm, often making meals for her family and farm workers. She graduated from Cleveland High School in 1968 and then went on to Cosmetology School. After her graduation, she and a friend established and operated Crazy Combs Salon in Angier, NC.

She became a loving mother of two daughters, and later became a top-producing professional Real Estate Agent. Phyllis was a great cook, gardener, and a artist. She could sew, and she made many clothes for herself and her daughters. She could paint and write poetry, and she loved music. She had a great sense of humor and a great sense of style. She will be missed by her family and many friends.

She is survived by her husband and life partner, Ken Stearns of Wilmington; daughters, Deanna Turlington Kleiss (Marc) of Raleigh, NC and Carla Jaclyn Benson of Benson, NC; brother, Carl Coats of Four Oaks, NC, and sister-in-law Jessica Zamott.

A Celebration of Life Memorial Service will be held 2 pm Saturday, January 15, 2022 at Cape Fear Free Will Baptist Church, 5350 Holly Tree Road, Wilmington, led by Pastor Patrick Hall.

Share memories and condolences with the family by visiting the “Condolence” tab.

Wilmington Funeral & Cremation 1535 S. 41st Street, Wilmington, NC 28403 910-79-9099.


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  • January 14, 2022
    Brenda Coats Norris and family lit a candle:
    Lit since January 14, 2022 at 1:30:33 PM

  • January 14, 2022
    Sherry Coats says:
    Condolences to family and friends. Phyllis and I were cheerleaders together. Wayne was a good friend and grew up with her. Our children were friends. We will cherish the memories. God Bless.

  • January 15, 2022
    Lavon and Dean Benson lit a candle:
    Lit since January 15, 2022 at 1:43:28 AM

  • January 15, 2022
    Marilyn Morey says:
    Praying for Phyllis' family and friends. May memories of Phyllis be a blessing to her family and friends.

  • January 17, 2022
    Sue Smith Johnson says:
    I am so sorry to hear about Phyllis’s sickness and death. Prayers for her family. We were the best of friends at Cleveland school!