Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Joe Phillips Football

This Blog is created by Joe Phillips. I played Professional Football in The National Football League for fourteen seasons. I was drafted by the Minnesota Vikings. I was cut and signed as a "Replacement Player" by the San Diego Chargers in 1987. I spent 5 seasons with the Chargers before becoming one of the first Free Agents to move following the White decision in 1992 and signing with the Kansas City Chiefs. I spent 6 seasons as a Chief. I then played 1 season for the St Louis Rams. I ended my career with a final season as a Viking in Minnesota.

This Blog is created with the purpose of responding to certain allegations and statements made about me and my life by my former wife, Cynthia Ream-Phillips, in an article published in the Kansas City Star, The Columbian Newspaper, and in an interview aired on "Real Sports with Bryant Gumbel".

I started this Blog, and will continue to add comments to it, because my children do not deserve to be told that they were abandoned by their father. They do not deserve to have their friends, schoolmates or others around them telling them that their father abandoned them. They do not deserve to be told their father is something he is not. The amount of information that needs to be stated is voluminous. I will be adding and editing to this Blog on an ongoing basis. Please be patient.

First and most importantly what must be addressed is the idea that I abandoned my four children. As you will see, this a lie.

Following the end of my time as a Football player, I was faced with the reality that the marriage I had been in for 17 years had been ending for several years. I was prepared for, and in fact, somewhat relieved that the intense physical toll would be ending. Toward the end of my career it was evident to me that the lifestyle of professional football would be easier for me to leave then for my former wife. From the beginning of the marriage she had worked to promote herself through football and I had done a great deal to facilitate her achieving the things she set out to do. I paid for all expenses(tuition and lifestyle) as she attended law school and sat for three bar exams. I purchased a beauty salon for her. Through contacts at the Chiefs, I facillitated her being able to do several television shows, including the Chiefs Pregame show, Chiefs Christmas and others. Through my contacts at Turner Sports ( I had done sideline for the Senior Bowl in 1997) she was hired to do Turner Sports Super Bowl Pregame Show. I even brought her on as a Co-Host to my Radio Show in Kansas City. Cindy, during this time, enjoyed a kind of "soap opera" life. She had a Beauty Salon, a personal trainer, full time nannies. plastic surgeons, a professional decorator, and a cook. We lived in a beautiful home near the plaza in Kansas City and except for the multiple football injuries that I was accruing and suffering from, we and our children were in good health.

But, as I knew, the life had to end. The injuries were crippling. I was anxious to begin life as something other than a defensive tackle, the most physically punishing task on a football field. I had a license to practice law. I had a great association with the Law Firm of McDowell, Rice, Smith and Gaar in Kansas City and had been allowed to gain legal experience with the firm in the football offseasons. I had the benefit of many friends and contacts in Kansas City with the Chiefs and in the community. I was ready. She was not, or perhaps, she was ready to move on with me out of the picture.

I did everything possible to save the marriage that I was in with Cindy. I agreed to move to Florida so she could be closer to her parents. We moved less than ten miles from them. They had continually been present at our homes while we were married, and when we moved to Florida, it became apparent Cindy was invested more in spending time with them than in continuing to build a relationship with me as something other than a professional athlete. I attended marriage counseling twice a week for over ten months. It was to no avail.

Cindy's parents worked as family law mediators in the courthouse of the county Cindy and I moved to. Yes, talk about a railroad job: Move to jurisdiction in which her parents work in the courthouse in a family law, when every ounce of financial or gain or status was beaten out of me after years of football, and then, construct a circumstance in which I was painted as something I was not. All this took time, two years, and then, of course, money (Cindy transferred over 2 million out of accounts within less than forty five days of the divorce filing and another 1.7 million upon conclusion of the divorce financial matters) and the children. So much for the lie about me spending 90% of the money that I made on the football field--the lies, distortions and manipulations are pervasive and are not motivated by adherence to actual occurrences but by how the statements can create a distortion of my true character in the mind's of those in the court and community, helping her execute her plan.

I filed for divorce when I learned Cindy was both personally telling and sending letters to people stating that I was trying to kill her. I have not and would not ever do such a thing. I was advised I had to file for divorce for my protection. As it had to be explained to me, I couldn't face it without others showing me, Cindy was orchestrating a scenario in which she would have a tremendous amount of leverage over me. She was doing it without regard for the truth or actual events, using the technique of telling a big enough lie enough times to lead uninformed people to eventually accept it without question. Always and forever anyone who cares to read this needs to know--

Cindy left Florida first. I was seeing my children 3-5 times a week, going to their schools, and having them visit my home. Cindy moved those kids to New York City in the summer of 2002. She had made multiple trips to New York with the children without my knowledge. She convinced my eldest daughter Ashley to attend a performing arts school in the Queensborough area of New York City and used Ashley's relationship with me to coerce me into a kind of submission; either I must let the children move thousands of miles away or risk Ashley forever believing that I was the person who stood in the way of her dreams. What a horrible position for a father and daughter to be put in. What could I do? The choice for me, created by Cindy, was would I be a father who crushed his eldest daughter's hopes or one who was certain to lose access to his three other children with their relocation to New York? Either choice was cruel to me and the children.

The move to New York I am certain was motivated by Cindy believing it was her way to get back in front of the camera and see her face on the television screen. She had lived in New York for several years before she met me and had contacts in that city. She was especially driven to use her relationship with Sally Jesse Raphael to help Cindy gain in roads in the television business.

After Cindy's move to New York with the children, I flew there and stayed in hotels every other weekend to see the children. I took them trick or treating and visited their schools. It was financially, physically, and emotionally exhausting. I was alone in Florida, surrounded by bad memories of false accusations of drug abuse, violence, and mental instability. The divorce was an assault on me as a person, father, etc... We, with the participation and mediation of our marriage counselor, had made an agreement for an amicable divorce. Cindy's agreement to this was simply a way to keep me from seeing the action she was preparing. While I was doing everything to save my family, I was accused of drug and alcohol abuse. I said, "Fine, you say I am crazy or on drugs, I'll do whatever it takes to save this marriage." I sought extensive professional advice. It turned out to be a good thing; they could vouch for me, my actions and my stability. One analyst after being involved in a deposition and review of the case and the facts said alcohol may have kept me sane! I was never diagnosed by them with anything other than depression.

I went so far as to have myself tested before and after ever visitation with my children. It too was a good thing as we used the tests in court when she accused me of being on drugs during a visitation with my children. With over 2 and 1/2 years of random testing, testing before and after seeing my children at times and sites of Cindy's choosing, I never tested positive for anything.--nothing--ever--in spite of this, she continues to make allegations. I ask people to look at the facts not just her assertions.

During the divorce, Cindy had me followed for over six months by two private investigators trying to find something she could use to support her lies about me. The lead investigator at his deposition stated he would fax his reports to Cindy; then, she would edit them and send them to him for his signature. Is that unbelievable? She is so manipulative. I can't imagine how much money she had to pay the investigators. By the way, the "worst thing " they found was I had two beers and a bowl of clam chowder in the Dallas airport. Amazing, this woman is practicing law, scary.

During a visitation in May of 2004 in New York City with my children I was asked by one of them if I would be able to come see them when they moved to Pennsylvania. I was shocked. I had not been informed of any plans or intentions to move the children. Later it came to my attention that Cindy had purchased a home in Washington, PA. in October of 2003. She had in no way consulted me or advised me of the move until in June of 2004, she informed me that if I was going to pick up the children for summer, I would have to do so at their new home in Pennsylvania. I did so and spent six great weeks with the children at my home in Oregon where we were able to spend a great deal of time getting with the children's cousins, aunts, uncles and grandparents.


John said...

Thank you for sharing this...you have my deepest sympathy.

Anonymous said...

why didn't you give a rebuttle during the real sports interview?

Anonymous said...

Joe, thank you so much for sharing all of this. You may not remember me but we met several times when i was young. I think you may have done some business with my dad during the off-season at the law firm (he worked for sprint at the time). Anyway i remember going to River-Falls one year and getting a picture with you, and you got Marcus to take one with me too. You also came to some sort of get together at my house in Leawood and i remember playing catch with you in the back yard, i still have a picture of it (although i think i may have caught up with you i'm about 6'5" 270 these days playing D-line for a DII college). I also remember visiting your house with my dad and meeting your family, including your huge great danes. You were my hero when i was young, in fact i wore #75 up until 8th grade when i begin wearing my dads #77. And i even wore a pair of gloves you gave me up in River-Falls to several cold games in high school. We moved to denver when i was in 2nd grade, but i continued to follow you and the chiefs. I was even at the famous Monday night game in the old mile high when montana threw the game winning TD to willie davis. I wore my #75 joe phillips jersey to school the next day. John Elway's daughter Jordan was in my class and didn't think too highly of that. I continued to follow your career until you retired. The next time i remember hearing your name was in these stories about how you were on the run and a bunch of other tall tails. My dad and i talked about our memories of you and both couldn't believe what was going on. I felt so bad about the situation. I'm glad to know that we were right about you, I'm really glad you came out with this information. Everybody in KC NEEDS to know this Joe. I'm hesitant to put my name on an open forum like this. But I just wanted to let you know that you were really larger than life to me when i was a kid and i'm very glad all the stories were not true. Good luck clearing your name Joe, it will be difficult in our current media enviroment but i think the people of Kansas City will understand. Thanks for all the good memories Joe.

Joe Phillips said...

thank you guys for all the support--Joe Phillips

What's Wright with Nick Wright said...

Joe... if you want to tell your story to your Kansas City fans, I do a radio show on 610 and would love to have you on. E-mail me if you are interested, whatswright@gmail.com

Either way, thanks for sharing.

Joe Phillips said...

psulionz77-is your fathers initials B.B.?

if so I would love to say hello-he was and is a good friend

thank you,


Joe Phillips said...

My attorney was called about 72 hours before the show was to air--it would have done no good, the story was done. Cindy had been working on it for months


bunny said...

Hey Joe,

This situation is very sad as I remember how close you and Cindy once were and what great kids you have. Life is full of heartaches with each person having a different kind and reason.
Sometimes it’s hard to understand another’s pain because of our personal opinions and conflicts. However caring for someone means respecting what is important to that person. Without respect there is no trust or safe feeling.
We all make mistakes; the best we can do is to learn, try to do better, forgive and adjust the best we can to be able to go on.
Most everything in life can be changed, except death so we must be thankful for what we do have because many people have nothing. I wish both your families well.

Linda M

seashells said...

I find it amazing how people put athletes on a pedastal and assume what they say is the truth. Before believing blindly-ck his DUI's, ck his stint at Betty Ford and another facility in FL. Joe took the credit for all of his wife's accomplishments-but she surely did not take credit for his accomplishments on the field. Couples should enhance each others lives and share in the credit as well as the blame. You assume that what he said about his wife is true-you support him in his plea for smypathy when in fact most of what his blog says is a lie. Has Joe ever made it a point to write to the children? NO! Has he made any effort to sit down calmly and discuss the issues that could be resolved with the best interest of the children? NO! How many court appearances has Joe missed? Check that out!!! Joe decided to leave the marriage because the daily routine of children and no local recognition and no employment was boring.Joe is a legend in his own mind and not being in the action-was boring as shown by his behavior of irresponsiblity towards his marraige and his children. What about the children? Joe is looking for sympathy. He admits he has a law degree-does he use it--NO. He has a license to sell stocks-does he use it. What is Joe doing to support his four children? Do you how many times did he delay hearings because he has no respect for the legal system or anyone who tries to make him accountable. Lets see he states he had the children in the summer of 2004-if he had paid his child support and followed the direction of the court-he could have been building a relationship with all his children. Why is it that when gifts arrive that Ashley is always left out? Why is that Joe? Are you punishing her for something? She is an adult and see things for what they are. She knows the hurt inflcited on the entire family once you left-she had to become a grown up to help with the care of the other children. Hows that bit of info-the impact of divorce on children is horrific but a father who is deliquent in his child support as well as being physical
ly connected only adds to the permanent damaged caused by the divorce. Joe keeps complaining about money-what about the children you supposedly love. This blog is to highlight some of the items you did not mention and to let you know that there are lots of folks who really know the truth about you-with absolutely no regard to your once being a professional athlete. You rambled on about yesterday-i"in your opinion" but what about today? Are you current with your support? Are you abiding to the rules set forth by the courts? You had to follow directions on the field-how about in real life Joe--are you followning the rules like any average Joe or are you above the rules? I just wanted to enter some avenues of interest that might put a more truthful light on this situation.

Anonymous said...

Ya Joe, my dad is B.B (coincidentally so am I). We still live in KC and our number should be listed in the white pages, if not you can contact me at psulionq77@hotmail.com. Please note that it is a "q" after lion, it is different than my blog id. We would love to hear from you Joe.

Joe Phillips said...


I wrote to the children twice a week until cindy used them as evidence in the divorce, putting her own twist on them. The support issue involves over a quarter million dollars withdrawn from my daughter Uniform transfer to Minors act account which could not be accessed by her under the laws of the state of New york until age 21-yet the money was withdrawn three years prior to that--my posting is truthful and is simply a tidbit of extensive manipultions and distortions by Cindy

Thank you for reading my posting and I wish you well

sis said...

I would like to add a short comment exemplary of the frustration encoutered in maintaining contact with Joe's children with his former wife.

Over this past weekend, Joe's mother attempted to call his youngest child to wish him a happy birthday. Usually, these calls go unanswered and unreturned, but nonetheless, our mother calls faithfully every birthday, hoping to speak with the children. This particular time, Joe's former wife did pick up the phone just long enough to tell our mother never to call again.

Quite simply, I am tired of seeing my mother cry. She sends gifts, she calls, but this former children's librarian and wonderful mother/grandmother has not been able to speak with her grandhildren since February 2005.

Joe's entire family has made efforts to contact the kids, all to no avail. Specifically, we have sent cards and gifts to Ashley; however, she has requested not to be contacted further.

If Ashley called me tomorrow, I would be overjoyed. I have a card sitting on my desk for her. I am guessing she recently graduated from college, and I would love to congratulate her, but we are completely shut out.

Anonymous said...


My Brother has also lost contact with his son and I haven't seen my Godson in 14 months. He will be six on June 2nd. Ex-wives and Ex-wives CONTROLLING mothers can be outrageous and downright cruel. Don't give up!! I haven't and will hopefully see my family soon.

Cousin CJ said...

Hey Joe,

As you know and have known for years, I am so deeply sorry for all that you and your immediate family have been through. Although I cannot even begin to fully fathom how you must feel, and all the heartache that has occurred, I do share in the feeling of loss over not being able to contact these four precious kids.

My children have loved M, J and JJ as though they were their very own first cousins, but unfortunatly have never been able to get to know Ashley. It saddens me beyond words that all of us have been prevented contact with your children. I do not understand it, even when I attempt to look at the situation through another perspective.

Even if there is a specific reason in her mind that drives her to keep you from them, I still cannot comprehend why your mom & dad, your sisters, neices & nephews, and cousins including me and my own kids would be prevented from contacting them. What purpose does this serve? We all love these kids SO VERY MUCH.

I have sent letters, pictures and birthday cards that I am fairly certain were never seen by the children. (At least they were never responded to.) I know that your mom has resorted to taking pictures of, and cataloging each card and gift that she sends. She is so worried that they are prevented from receiving these items and she just wants to be able to say someday, if they ever asked, "Grandma, why did you forget about us?" She can respond, "Sweetie, I never forgot you...EVER....here is proof of just a small amount of the times your grandpa and I thought about you!!"

I have watched you interact with your children a thousand times and I have NEVER seen any incling of anything that could even remotely be percieved as mistreatment. You have never been anything other than a very caring, concerned, loving and even doting dad.

I remember when Ashley was a tiny infant, and we were bathing her in the sink at your apartment in North Hollywood--the amount of tenderness and gentleness you showed toward her touches me to this day as I remember back.

I remember designing M's room with you at your house in Oregon City. I remember how much fun you and I had painting and talking and anticipating the kids' summer visit. You had already painted the boys' room a bold and masculine blue but asked me to help you add some girlie touches to her room. You gave me a carte blanche with Pottery Barn Kids,and we picked out the CUTEST furniture and decor. It was a room fit for a princess, and clearly you regard your daughters as your princesses. Your love for ALL your children is so very apparent in every aspect of life.

I can recall so many other fun times, examples of the amazing dad that you are.

I pray every day that someday justice will be served and all of us, but especially you, will be reunited with these four VERY important members of our family.

I congratulate you for the bravery it took to write this--bearing your soul as well as your finances to the world. It cannot be an easy thing. But I know you did it out of love for Ashley and the other three, and hopefully some day they will read this and understand that we all love them more than they could have ever imagined.

Love always,

Cousin CJ

tom said...

hi joe we miss you and love ya glad everyone is getting to hear the truth, about the ex. sam says to tell big joe hi,, eriks getting his license, has a car im turning 50 soon , we miss you and love you buddy take care bigdawg

bigtone67207 said...

Joe, Hang in there dude! I have had friends that were in the same boat as you! The kids finally came around to understand that Dad was not as bad as the vendictive mother had told them! I also want to thank you for the memories of the Kick Bu** defense you were a part of! I miss those days! I was a Chiefs season ticket holder during your playing years in KC and thought you played the game the way it was suppose to be played! You took your job seriously both on and off the field! You were and still are a pillar for the entire NFL community! I think alot of the young players need to look back at your career to get the correct example of what it takes to be an NFL player and too play the game for the love not just the money!

Thanks Again and good luck and May God Bless You


pj said...

Hey Joe,
Thanks for sharing this part of your life with us. It can't be easy, but it's good you are telling your story. We used to hang out during the Kennedy Gym days in Salem. You also spent many hours throwing with Brad. You were just a great person to be around. Family and friends always came first.
This is just so sad for you and your kids. It is so unfair to completely shut off the kids from family and loved ones. Just know you cannot give up on them. You love them and you fought for them. Keep it up. God bless you Joe and your family. If you are ever up in Washington, there is a discus and shot waiting...
Your friends in PT,
B & P

mykidmyworld said...

Joe, i dont know if you still read this, but i hope you do. Cynthia is now my ex's (and child's father) attorney and she is using him as a pawn. We were civil with each other and even worked out an agreement, but when she found out she manipulated him into fighting me for our child in order to keep him paying her attorney fees. I know it sounds far-fetched, but if you read this or someone that knows you reads this, i would love to have an alli to fight against the wretched cougar that she is.

Joe Phillips said...

to: mykidworld
yes i read this---I am saddened by your struggle, it is diffecult when the secondary agenda is plain to one party and not the other, It sounds like cindy learned many of the techniques she now uses from the attorney's shend her family used in the divorce between she and I. I wish you well and will pay atention if you chose top make additional comments.

good luck and my heart goes out to you.

Anonymous said...

Hey Joe, I stumbled across your site today. I have been wondering if there was going to be anything published with your side of the story. There is always two sides to a story and what I had read up until now was definitely one sided. It's good to hear your side. This is just an awful situation which I hope in the future gets better for you, your children and your family. I wish you all the best and if you wish to contact me I can be reached at jeffhendryx@hotmail.com. It's been quite a while since we talked.

Best wishes


KCJazz said...

I am so glad I found this blog. I am a Chiefs-maniac. My Grandpa was a redcoat and we still have season tix, 12th row, KC side. I have grown up so proud of our team and late owner Lamar Hunt, because of the overall integrity of the whole organization. I have your card which you autographed for me around 1994. My HS boyfriend was given a chance by Dick Vermeil in 02 and had a spot on the practice squad. (He later went on to play 5 yrs with the Falcons and was just cut last sept from Titans.) In the era of Tony G and Jason Dunn in KC, it was a great honor for the undrafted TE. I got to know some of the players and The Chiefs, as you know, are more than just athletes to us, they are our family in KC. When people called football players dumb, your name was one of the first I threw out there. I had read the flip side of this story first and was broken-hearted. I am so glad to read your side of the story. I am well aware you aren't a perfect man, but neither is anyone else. Divorces are messy affairs and even more so when children, lots of money, and fame is involved. Now, coupled with u both having law degrees, it can't even be expected to be anything but a circus. Keep writing your kids, Joe, dont give up. As children age, they mature and often look back and have a different view of their parents than they did as teens. I know this first hand. Not so many years ago, I was one of those teens. We love ya here in KC and don't ever forget that! I wish you all the best and thank you again for having the courage to open your personal life to us, as I am sure it's very painful.

Burt said...

whats up joe I hope all turns out well for you
Burt Grossman

r055co said...

Good luck my brother and I hope you are doing well. This blog is over 3 years old so I do hope you've made progress. I do remember you from High School and hate seeing what happened with your family. While not to the extent of yours my story is somewhat similar with my Ex, it's the sad state of today's society.

Anyway, take care brotherman and the only thing I have to say is the truth does come one. One day your children will know the truth.

Miss Officer said...

Hey, Joe. I'm married to your cousin Michael (Edwin & Anne's son.) We hope you're ok and hope you read this. If you do read this please contact us.

dlh said...

Thank you for sharing all of this information. I often wondered what happened to you after you graduated. I am so sorry for this to be your story. I really feel for your children and hope they are doing well since itt's been a few years since you wrote this blog. We went to CR together and were on the track team, my name is Darcy. I threw the shot put for CR in the 80-82. Jenny Thomas was a good friend of mine. I hope you are getting on with your life and all it has to offer and your children are in your life. Thinking of you.....

Dennis McClatchey said...

Hi Joe. I just discovered your blog. I know you to be a kind, thoughtful, and caring person when we worked together in KC to help find ways of keeping kids in school. Unfortunate events entered both our lives causing our dream not to be realized. I would love to become reconnected. If you are like inclined, please contact me. Dennis McClatchey...dclach@comcast.net

tracy two crows said...

Hello from The Fort Joe,it's Z!Not sure if you still keep this blog up,but just wanted to let you know I'm still thinking about you,and hope you're OK.I remember everything you were going through,and I hated it.I used to listen to you almost daily,and felt bad there was nothing I could do but be a friend.You're a gentleman and scholar,a great dad who didn't deserve the railroading you got.I hope all is well.If you would like,please contact me at apache4justice@gmail.com.Would love to know you're OK and doing well.Zena

CKN CPG said...

Little Joe,

I just ran across this blog last night. I couldn't sleep.

I am so saddened by the your marriage turned out. I have often thought of you through the years and hoped your marriage was strong and your life happy.

I sometimes selfishly wonder what life would have been like had you only asked me to wait. Then I quickly think that you probably made a better match with Cynthia than with me as she was a sports fanatic and I was not.

I cannot imagine being separated from my children; the oldest of whom you knew when she was 3. It must be Hell on earth for you. I am so sorry. My heart literally hurts for you.

I know it must be hard for your Mom and Dad and sister too. Divorce tears the whole world apart and that is without the evil vindictive nature your ex-wife exhibits. She must be a very unhappy woman. It is a shame she is unable to be the best mother she could be.

I will always care for you and care deeply about what happens to you. I wish I knew how you are doing now. We have lived very near each other for years it seems. I always think of you on your birthday; for some reason that date is permanently stuck in my memory.... for 30 years!

I wish you much happiness and reconciliation with your children.

"The Original Cindy"
CKP CPG - 1984 - remember?

CKN CPG said...

Oops! My oldest was only 2... I always hated math ;)

Dudley Duffney said...

Hey Joe

I lived with my parents across from your wife and you in the condos on 36 and 1/2 St-in St Louis Park- when you first signed with the Vikings

I was a competitive power lifter and attending law school (Hamline) myself

You were a good guy-at the time you wife came across-to me-as very cold sophisticated person-taking advantage of you

Your blog makes absolute sense-email me if you need help with a chronological history of the mid 1980s-and my perceptions


Klein2 said...

I remember when little Joe was in my class at the Montessori school in Kansas City. You were always so talkative and excited to see him when you picked him up. Hang in there

Klein2 said...

Thank you for sharing. Loved the time you spent in KC