Elizabeth Phillips Gilliam

Published 8:12 pm Friday, January 21, 2011

By Staff
Elizabeth Phillips Gilliam, 82, of Raleigh, died Thursday, Jan. 20, 2011, surrounded by her family and their love after a brief illness. A service celebrating her life will be held at St. Thomas Episcopal Church on Craven Street in Bath, N.C., on Saturday, Jan. 29, 2011, followed by a private family burial in the church cemetery.
Mrs. Gilliam was born April 17, 1928, in Thomasville, N.C., to the late Charles Fuller Phillips and Virginia Elizabeth Ryan. She graduated Thomasville High School in 1945 and Woman’s College of the University of North Carolina in 1949 with an A.B. in Sociology. She later earned a Masters Degree in Education with a concentration in Library Science from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro in 1970.
Faith, family, learning and kindness were cornerstones of Mrs. Gilliam’s life. She lived a life of great abundance both in the love she bestowed on her children and those she gained in marriage. As well, her extraordinary faith in her heavenly Father gave her a purpose driven life. Her children were the gold in which she took great delight. Their success and wellbeing were her personal joy their pain, hers. Her faith was practiced in the Episcopal Church all of her life. She was instrumental in the revitalization of St. Thomas Episcopal Church, Bath, N.C., in the 1980s, and she volunteered extensively at the Church of the Good Shepherd in Raleigh. She served Him well as a model of unflinching faith and powerful gentleness. She taught children’s Sunday school for fifty years and now returns home after a life well lived.
Mrs. Gilliam is survived by three sons and daughters-in-law, Charles Phillips and Carole Currin Gilliam, James Franklin and Debra Scott Gilliam, and Robert Elliott and Janet Lilley Gilliam, all of Raleigh; three granddaughters, Meredith and Elizabeth Gilliam and Sarah Jordan, and five grandsons, Matthew and wife Jennifer and Jonathan Gilliam, Charles Jordan, and Charles and Edward Gilliam all of Raleigh. Surviving great-granddaughters are Perry Elizabeth and Peyton Marie Gilliam. Also surviving is a sister, Martha Phillips Johnson of Thomasville, N.C. Mrs. Gilliam is preceded in death by her husband of 47 years, Maurice Elliott Jack Gilliam, a brother Charles Fuller Phillips Jr., and a beloved daughter, Ann Elizabeth Gilliam Jordan.
A special debt of gratitude is given to the comforting care provided by Sandra Jordan and Hospice of Wake County, the Rev. Miriam Saxon of the Church of the Good Shepherd and the many kindnesses expressed by the parishioners of St. Thomas Episcopal Church.
Memorial contributions may be made to St. Thomas Episcopal Church, P. O. Box 257, Bath, N.C. 27808.
Paid Obituary