Michelle Diane McElvain-Bills was born on April 23, 1956, in Chattanooga, Tennessee, to the late Lillian Tatum McElvain and David McElvain. She was the second of six children. Michelle departed this life on Monday, January 10, 2022 at Christ Hospital in Oak Lawn, IL.
She was a proud graduate of Brainerd High School Class of 1974 in Chattanooga, Tn. She continued her education by attending The Tennessee State University where she graduated with a Bachelor of Science Degree in Health and Physical Education on May 3, 1980. It was at The Tennessee State University where she met the love of her life Domont F. Bills, III of Joliet, Il. They were married on February 27, 1982 in Chattanooga, TN and to this union four children were born. Miranda Bills, Tanz Bills, Delphia Bills and Domont Bills IV.
Following her graduation, she returned to Chattanooga, and worked for Provident Life & Accident Insurance Company for 9 years. In 1989 she moved to Joliet, Il., and began working for Parker’s Laundromat Service. Next, she joined Carson Pirie Scott as a fashion consultant for Fashion Fair Cosmetics. While still at Carson’s she was hired as a casual employee for the United States Postal Service and worked both jobs simultaneously. On January 22, 1994 she was hired as a City Carrier for the United States Postal Service at the Lockport location. Throughout her career at the post office she became a 204B and floated between New Lenox, Lockport and Romeoville postal centers. She then became a supervisor at the post office where she supervised at Lockport and Romeoville postal centers. Michelle was dedicated to her job and her postal family.
Michelle’s hobbies were decorating, making flower arrangements and dancing. Her love of dancing started when she was a majorette for Riverside Marching band prior to attending Brainerd High School. This is where she gained her dance and choreography skills. She displayed her love of decorating and flower arrangements at Brown Chapel being part of the decorating committee making center pieces and decorating for numerous events. She also made costumes for plays and the dance team. Michelle also made flower arrangements and decorated for weddings. These were her passions that gave her peace and joy.
Michelle attended A.M.E. church as a child when she attended Cleagues Chapel A.M.E. in Chattanooga, TN. The family later began attending Orchard Knob Missionary Baptist Church and it was there that she accepted Christ under the late Rev. Benson Stevenson. Majority of her teaching at Orchard Knob came under the late great Rev. Harold K. Lester She was a faithful member of Orchard Knob and served on the Usher Board. Once she moved to Joliet, IL she went back to her A.M.E. roots and joined Brown Chapel A.M.E. under the late great Rev. Lishers Mahone Jr. Michelle was a faithful member of Brown Chapel and a true servant of God. During her time at Brown Chapel she was a member of the Steward board, worked on the finance committee, decorating committee, coordinator of the youth dance ministry and recruited for her Alma Mater Tennessee State University at the Annual Black College Fair hosted by Brown Chapel.
Michelle was preceded in death by her grandparents, Sarah Ann and Henry McElvain, Geneva and Clarence Tatum, parents: Lillian and David McElvain; mother and father-in law: Tanz and Domont F. Bills Jr., special aunt and uncle: Nellie Jordan and Matthew Jordan, brother: Robert Vernon McElvain Sr., several aunts, uncles and cousins.
She is survived by her husband: Domont F. Bills III, three daughters: Miranda Bills (Nashville, TN), Tanz Bills (Romeoville, IL), Delphia Bills (Nashville, TN), and one son: Domont F. Bills IV (Joliet, IL), eight grandchildren: Layla Pierce, Layoni Pierce, Sienna Gordon, Micah Jamison, Ericka Gordon, Aaron Pierce, Ace Bills, and Cannon Bills, two brothers: David “Rodney” McElvain and Brian McElvain of Chattanooga, TN, two sisters: Delphia McElvain Lewis of Roanoke, VA and Nicole McElvain-Martin of Fort Worth, TX., three brother-in-laws: Eric Lewis of Roanoke, VA, William Bills of Atlanta, GA and Ronald Bills of Joliet, IL., five sister-in-laws: Barbara McElvain, Carolyn McElvain and Ronnette McElvain all of Chattanooga, TN, Carolyn Bills of Joliet, IL. And Patricia Woodard of Harvey, IL., special childhood friend: Betty Shaw, of Atlanta, GA and college friend: Gazetta Gilchristof South Carolina and a host of nieces, nephews, cousins and friends.
Public viewing will be held on Saturday, Jan 22, from 2-3 p.m. with the funeral immediately following at Brown Chapel A.M.E Church 1502 Mills Road, Joliet, Il. 60433.
Courtesy announcement is by John P. Franklin Funeral Home.
Arrangements are by Minor-Morris Funeral Home, 112 Richards St., Joliet, Il. 60433.