Philip Ridley Cecil, chairman of Liberty National Bank, passed away peacefully on October 10 with his family nearby at Paris Regional Medical Center in Paris, Texas, due to complications from COVID-19. He was 84.
After earning a business degree from the University of Texas–Austin and then serving as a lieutenant JG in the U.S. Navy aboard the U.S.S. Saratoga in the Mediterranean Sea, Cecil returned to Dallas to accept a job with the First National Bank of Dallas. A third-generation banker, he moved with his wife, Sally, to Paris in 1963 to begin his 57-year banking career at Liberty National Bank and start their family. At the time of his death, he was serving as chairman of the board at Liberty National Bank.
Cecil was well known in the local business community and regional banking circles. When the community needed him, he was always willing to serve. He was chairman of the Lamar County Chamber of Commerce, member of the Paris ISD school board and the first chairman of the Paris Economic Development Corp. He also chaired the City of Paris Charter review committee and served on a variety of other boards. Cecil was a Rotary Club Paul Harris Fellow, and in 2013, the Red River Valley Boys and Girls Club inducted him into the Wall of Honor. He was serving on the Paris Junior College Memorial Foundation at the time of his death and a scholarship fund is being established in his name.
When he wasn’t working, Cecil enjoyed fishing and spending time with friends and family. He was a tennis player back in the day and always enjoyed exercise and being outdoors.
Cecil is survived by his wife of 57 years, Sally, three children and their spouses, six grandchildren and a great-grandchild on the way, as well as many additional family and friends. In lieu of flowers, the family asks that donations be made to the Red River Valley Boys and Girls Club Foundation, Attn: Cindy Ringwald, P.O. Box 919, Paris, TX 75461.