Mills Godwin High School students, staff holding celebration of life for teacher killed in crash

HENRICO COUNTY, Va. (WRIC) — Mills Godwin High School will hold a vigil on Wednesday at 7 p.m. in honor of one of their beloved teachers.

The following message was shared on Facebook:

“The Godwin High School Community is invited to a public Celebration of Life honoring Todd Phillips … All GHS faculty, staff, students, past and present, as well as others who knew and loved Todd Phillips are welcome,” the website said.

As part of the celebration of Mr. Phillips, organizers ask that participants please wear gym shorts and t-shirts in honor of “T-Philly.”

Phillips died last Friday in a car accident in Henrico at the intersection of John Rolfe Parkway and Ridgefield Parkway.

He taught at Mills Godwin High School and is listed online as the chair of the school’s specialty center for science, math and technology.

Todd Phillips
Todd Phillips

An impromptu memorial was set up by friends and students at the intersection where the incident occurred.

A student left the following note:

“Thank you for always seeing the best in us. Know we saw the best in you every day. You are loved and missed!”

Another message, signed by Peyton L. expressed a similar message.

“T Philly, thank you for believing in me, even when I didn’t believe in myself. You were so much more than a teacher, you were a coach, friend, and mentor to me. I will never forget you or all that you taught me. Thank you for everything and for watching over me. I promise I will make you proud.”


Henrico’s superintendent, Dr. Patrick Kinlaw, issued the following statement:

“We are deeply saddened by the passing of Todd Phillips. Todd was a vibrant and beloved leader who made an immensely positive impact on the lives of so many young people. He was a treasured member of our Henrico family and an extraordinary individual. Our thoughts and prayers go out to his wife Kelly, their family, and the entire Godwin community.”

Police say they responded to the 10700 block of Ridgefield Parkway shortly before 2:30 p.m. on Friday for a two-vehicle accident. Phillips was pronounced dead at the scene. The other driver was transported to a local hospital with undisclosed injuries.

The stoplight at the intersection did not have power during the crash, and police said it appeared that neither driver came to a stop.

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