NORMAN — Phyllis A. Dow, a former assistant United States attorney and practicing attorney in New Mexico, passed away in her sleep Thursday, Aug. 15, 2013.
Phyllis was preceded in death by her parents, Benjamin F. and Iryl C. Adkins, from Norman, where she was born in 1951 and graduated from Norman High School.
She is survived by her loving sons, Christopher R. Dow, a student at New Mexico State University, and Clinton E. Dow, a first-year law student and member of the New Mexico National Guard Medical Evacuation Unit, “C” Company, 1-171 AVN Brigade, and her former husband, Mark C. Dow. Phyllis is also survived by her sister, Marilyn Funk, with nephews Christopher and Benjamin Funk, and her brother, Lain Adkins, with nephews Craig and Mark Adkins.
Phyllis attended the University of Oklahoma, graduating with her B.S. in mathematics. She received distinction by her induction into the Phi Beta Kappa Society for her academic achievement in the hard sciences. Phyllis simply enjoyed competing with “the guys.”
Phyllis was a music lover and played the clarinet in the OU marching band. Because of her love of music, Phyllis was an avid attendee of the New Mexico Symphony and the New Mexico Symphonic Chorus. Phyllis requested soloist Marilyn Bernard to sing at her memorial service. Ms. Bernard is currently the director for the New Mexico Youth Symphony Chorus.
Phyllis and Mark Dow met at New Mexico State University, where they married, and soon traveled to Pepperdine University Law School to attend, where Phyllis again excelled, graduating as its valedictorian in her class of 1979. Phyllis and Mark moved back to Albuquerque where she started her legal career as a law clerk for the Hon. Juan G. Burciaga, United States District Judge. After her federal clerkship, she served as an assistant attorney general for the state of New Mexico followed by her selection as an assistant United States attorney, serving her country for 18 years until her retirement in March 2012. Phyllis was a active member of the New Mexico Bar Association, serving on many of its committees during her more than 30 years of legal service.