Phyllis Z. Grae

Phyllis Z. Grae

Phyllis Z. Grae

August 03, 1934~November 19, 2021

Phyllis Z. Grae (87) entered into eternal rest on November 19, 2021.  Born in Staten Island, New York, she was a graduate of Notre Dame Academy.  Her first 2 years of college were spent at Saint Mary-of-the-Woods in Indiana, and she graduated from the University of Arizona, where she was a member of Delta Delta Delta Sorority.

After graduation, Phyllis returned to Staten Island and soon after, met and married her first husband, Phil Grae, and had 3 children. Phyllis managed the unemployment insurance office for the New York State Department of Labor. After retiring from government service in 1980, the family moved to Forest Lake Estates in Port Richey, Florida.

After the death of her husband of 25 years, Phyllis moved into Sand Pebble Pointe Condominiums and opened Greek Unique in Tampa, Florida.  The business successfully served sorority and fraternity members at the Tampa-area universities for 30 years, with Phyllis becoming almost a surrogate mother to her employees, many of whom were away from home for the first time. She ran the store side-by-side with her husband, Alistair Neilson.

While running a successful business, Phyllis served the Sand Pebble community as President of the Condo Association.  Her passion for service brought her to local government, first as a member of the City of Port Richey Zoning Board, then to a seat on City Council, and eventually as Vice Mayor.

Phyllis was a devoted resident of Port Richey: “My City, My Love.” She was a devout member of the Roman Catholic faith her entire life.  She previously served as a Eucharistic Minister at St. Michael the Archangel in Hudson, Florida.  Phyllis was also a member of the Rotary Club and the Republican Party of Pasco County.

But above all of these accomplishments, her greatest was being a mother and grandmother. Family meant everything to her. Alongside her love of family, was her love of football. Never a Sunday was spent without the games on and Phyllis cheering on her beloved Dallas Cowboys. Coffee in one hand, the newspaper in the other, Phyllis was a class act right to the end. Quick witted with a loving heart. She will be missed by all.

Phyllis was preceded in death by her son Robert M. (“Bobby”) Grae, first husband Phil Grae, and second husband of 21 years Alistair R. Neilson.  She is survived by her two daughters, Carmelou G. Aloupas and Camille G. Engel (Kevin); five grandchildren, George A. Aloupas, Christopher O. Stasior, Evelyn M. Aloupas, Abigail L. Stasior, and Katharine V. Stasior; numerous cousins, nieces, nephews, and her Port Richey friends and neighbors.

The family wishes to thank the caring community of staff and residents at Sunshine Christian Home in Holiday, Florida, HPH Hospice, and Dobies Funeral Home. At Phyllis’ request, her body will be donated to the University of Florida, College of Medicine for the advancement of science. A celebration of life memorial service will be held in the new year.

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Memories of Phyllis Z. Grae

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Condolence

Robert and Sally Baron

November 23, 2021, 12:35 am

Camie and Carmelou we are sorry to hear about your Mom. She has always been a wonderful person to our family as we were always part of her family also. Please stay in touch as to when you do a memorial. Love to your family

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