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Celebration of life set for Maryville couple who died at a Sandals resort in Bahamas

Robbie and Michael Phillips were two of the three Americans who died at a Sandals resort in the Bahamas on May 6, according to Royal Bahamas Police.
Published: May. 19, 2022 at 4:50 PM EDT
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KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WVLT) - A celebration of life has been set for travel enthusiasts and Maryville couple, Robbie and Michael Phillips, who mysteriously died at a Sandals resort in the Bahamas.

The Phillips were married for 43 years and owned Royal Travel in Maryville. They were survived by their three children and six grandchildren, according to their obituaries.

The couple complained of nausea, vomiting and other symptoms the night of May 5, and were treated at a local medical facility, according to Bahamas Health Minister Dr. Michael Darville.

The next morning both were found dead in their hotel room. Mike was found slumped against a wall while Robbie was on their bed, both showing signs of convulsion, according to CBS.

WVLT News spoke with Jan O’Connor who lived next door to Mike, age 68, and Robbie, age 65, for 20 years.

“They were absolutely wonderful neighbors. They were great people,” O’Connor said.

O’Connor said their travel agency helped “so many people plan their honeymoons and plan their vacations.” She said they had the agency since she’s known them.

“We weren’t surprised at all to see a couple days ago to see that they’d gone to the Bahamas,” she said.

Investigators were sending sample to medical labs in the U.S. to determine the cause of death, according to Royal Bahamas Police Force Chief Superintendent Paul Rolle.

The celebration of life was set to start at 4 p.m. at the Foothills Church on Lamar Alexander Parkway on Saturday, May 21.

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