Former BYU Hall of Fame WR Phil Odle Passes Away

Posted: 31 July 2006

Orem, UT - One of the greatest wide receivers in BYU history passed away last Thursday at his Orem home.  Phil Odle's unexpected passing was attributed to chronic lung problems.  He was 63.

Few know much about BYU football before LaVell Edwards and his string of All-American quarterbacks, but in the mid-60s, BYU's Odle was a household name in the Western Athletic Conference.  From 1965-1967, Odle led BYU in receiving -- amassing 2,548 yards -- and was named All-Conference three straight years.  The 2,548 yards was an all-time BYU receiving record that stood for 23 years.  After his senior campaign, he was named a Dell Sports first team All-American and was drafted in the 5th round by the Detroit Lions.  He was inducted into the BYU Athletic Hall of Fame in 1978.

Odle and his wife Suzie were confirmed members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints just three days before he died.

Below is a copy of Odle's obituary courtesy of the Provo Daily Herald:

Phillip Morris Odle, 63, of Orem, returned to his Heavenly Father on July 27, 2006. He died unexpectedly at home, due to chronic lung problems.

He was born on November 23, 1942, to Ed and Mildred Odle, in Macedonia, Illinois. He grew up in Elgin, Illinois, which is where he met his eternal sweetheart, Susie. Upon graduating high school, Phil entered the Marine Corps and was stationed in San Diego, California. On September 29, 1962, he married Susan Lynn Kisselburg.

Through the blessings of God, he was brought to Utah Valley to Brigham Young University to play football for the Cougars. There, Phil excelled as a three-time ALL-WAC receiver and was an All American Wide Receiver from 1965-1967. He held the career record for pass receiving, total receiving yardage, and total touchdowns scored, over 20 years. Phil was drafted in the 5th round of the National Football League by the Detroit Lions.

He often said that his greatest "catch" was his wife, Susie!

Phil worked in auto sales for many years at local dealerships and was a pillar of the community. He always went out of his way to put others before himself. His selfless personality will be remembered as one of his greatest traits. He loved to garden and do yard work and took great pride in his home. His three grandchildren were the light of his life. Many days "Papa" could be found with one or more of them in his arms "cooching".

Phil and Susie were confirmed members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, on July 23, 2006. He was so excited to learn the gospel and looked forward to the day that he would be sealed with his family for eternity.

He is survived be his wife of 43 years, Susan; his children, Matthew (Julie) Odle of American Fork, and Stephanie (Jordan) Nelson of Saratoga Springs; three grandchildren: Cole, McKenzie, and Claire; a sister, Helen Kathalynas of Elgin, Illnois. He was preceded in death by his father and mother; brother, Dwight Odle; and sister, Lorene Ehorn.

The family would like to express many thanks to the wonderful people who touched Phil's life, and to Dr. Clark Bishop for his constant love, encouragement and expert medical care for our loving husband and father.

Funeral services will be held Tuesday, August 1, 2006, at 1 p.m., at the Sunset Heights 6th Ward, 500 South 600 West, Orem. Family and friends may visit Monday evening from 6-8 p.m. at the Walker Sanderson Funeral Home, 646 East 800 North, Orem. Interment will be in the Orem City Cemetery.

In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Phil Odle Memorial Fund at any branch of Capital Community Bank.

Condolences can be sent to the family at