Mildred Lee Gilley, born March 26, 1932, died at home on May 17 after a lengthy illness. Milly loved people. The sparkle of her eyes and her smile that she gave to everyone were priceless and foretold that fun, happy, heart-felt, Christ-focused conversation was about to happen. A natural athlete, she enjoyed playing fast-pitch softball and golf. Once St Elmo men challenged Chattanooga Valley men to a game, the Chattanooga Valley men took the challenge, saying they would bring their female pitcher (Milly, also known as Legs) and beat them. They did. Milly was a gifted pianist, playing for her church, Sunday school classes and her daughter, Sharon. Milly also loved to drive fast, with her three daughter’s heads in the backseat bobbing up and down as they passed by on Chattanooga Valley road.
Milly made her home in High Point, Ga. with her husband of 62 years, Claude H. Gilley (dscd 2/8/11), and raised three daughters: Sharon Grant (dscd 8/5/80) (husband Larry), Claudette Sanford (son and grandson Philip Howard Sanford, Jr.), and Cindy Lyon (husband Jim).
Milly loved Jesus Christ and worshiped Him as her Lord and Savior at First Presbyterian Church of Chattanooga (post 1985) and at Chattanooga Valley Nazarene Church (pre- 1985).
Along with husband, Claude and daughter, Sharon, Milly is preceded in death by her six siblings (Ernest, Dorothy Forrester, Ralph, Wilbur, Florence and Thomas) and parents, Charles and Harriet Williams.
The family is grateful for the love and care provided during the last six years by caregivers, which include Phyllis Swearengin, Rhonda Meeks, Paulette Holmes, Vickie Darnell, Amy Worland, Susan Shahan, Tracie Blakemore, Sue Wallin and Mary Tittle.
A private graveside service will be at Chattanooga National Cemetery on May 22.
The family will receive visitors from 6-8 p.m. on May 21 at Heritage Funeral Home and Crematory, Battlefield Parkway.