By allowing ads to appear on this site, you support the local businesses who, in turn, support great journalism.
TID board director Short dies
Phillip N. Short, a long time director of the Turlock Irrigation District Board of Directors and Hughson area farmer, died Sunday following a hospital stay.

Short, who served on the TID Board of Directors for over 32 years, was 73.

Longtime friend Sid Long, who served with Short on the board until his departure in 2001, said Short was having a tough time recovering from a recent heart surgery.

"I saw him a week ago," said Long. "He was weak, his voice wasn't strong."

Short had been appointed to fill a vacancy in the TID Division 1 seat left by Everett Tomlinson in August 1977.

"To me he was just a great guy," said Long. "He loved sports. He was a good farmer. He was very dedicated to his role as a director of TID. He had a memory. He didn't forget anything. He had more memory chips than a computer. As far as TID was concerned, he could tell you what the rainfall total was for every year he served on the board."

Long said Short was a "fun guy" who was enjoyable to serve alongside, whether it was making decisions about the public utility or attending water conventions together. The pair enjoyed seeing reactions of people to their last names.

"We did have fun with that," said Long, who recalled one instance in which they were checking into an Orlando, Florida hotel for a convention of the American Public Power Association.

"The lady behind the counter wanted our names and I said we were Mr. Long and Mr. Short. And she said 'Look, I've had a long day and I don't have time for this.' And when we showed her our IDs, she turned red faced."

Short attended grammar school with Long at Ceres Elementary School. He completed the eighth grade in Ceres and then his family moved to the family farm east of Hughson. Phil graduated from Hughson High School in 1953. He then attended the University of California at Berkeley and served in the Marine Corp Reserve.

Mr. Short served as the president of the TID Board as well as the president of the Association of California Water Agencies from 1993 to 1995. At the time of his death he was TID's elected representative to the Don Pedro Board of Control governing recreation operations at Lake Don Pedro, where he liked to fish.

A walnut and almond grower in Hughson since 1962, Mr. Short served on the Hughson Elementary School Board for 10 years. He also served on the Federal Walnut Control Board and was past chairman of the Walnut Marketing Board Research Committee. Short was a member of the California Walnut Commission, chairman of the export committee of the California Walnut Marketing Board and was past president of the Association of California Water Agencies.

He is survived by his wife, Kay, and five children.

Memorial arrangements are pending.