Cover photo for Lillian Hollowell Perry's Obituary
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1940 Lillian 2022

Lillian Hollowell Perry

January 26, 1940 — September 4, 2022

   Lillian Hollowell Perry, 82, of 1210-B Rocky Hock Landing Road, Edenton NC died peacefully in her sleep Sunday morning, September 4, 2022, after being surrounded by family all weekend.

   Her seven-year journey with ovarian cancer was filled with encouragement and praise to the Lord for the good health she experienced through surgeries and chemo treatments. The last thirty-five days of the journey was a fight. She took it head on and persevered with independence the first 18 days until she could do no more. Grateful was Lillian to be cared for by her family and under Hospice care in the comfort of her daughter’s home.

   Lillian was born in Chowan County on January 26, 1940 to the late Norvell Edward Hollowell, Jr. and Roxie Spruill Hollowell. She was preceded in death by her parents, her husband, Emmett Knight Perry in October 2020, and her brother, Roy Willie Hollowell in May 2021.

   Lillian was a graduate of Chowan High School married to her childhood sweetheart on June 8, 1958. After marriage, they moved to Newport News, Virginia and the second year they moved to Northern Virginia for Emmett’s job. Lillian was a homemaker and raised their two children in Nokesville and active with their school activities. They made many faithful friends in the community. The family were involved members of Oakdale Baptist Church and she was active in the women’s ministries.

   After Emmett’s retirement in 1989, they returned to Chowan County and built a home on property of her father’s farm. They enjoyed returning to their roots and reconnecting with school friends and family, as well as rejoining the Rocky Hock Baptist Church. They were active members in Sunday School when they were not traveling or visiting and loving on their daughter and son, grand-daughters and great-grandkids.

   Lillian worked with several of the local agriculture groups in Chowan County grading peanuts and potatoes for a few years. Then she joined the USDA Farm Service Agency (FSA) as a program technician in Perquimans and Pasquotank counties for six years and retired in 2015 from the Washington and Tyrrell County offices. She enjoyed supporting ‘her’ farmers and producers as she shared a sense of love and pride for their labor and dedication as farmers, like that of her father and grandfather.

   Lillian’s most cherished and favorite things were the daily phone calls received from the family, granddaughters, and video calls with the great-grandchildren. Her other daily joy was cleaning and caring for her home and the many orchids and plants inside it. Additionally, she nurtured her grandfather’s 140 years old pecan trees and looked forward to their bounty each fall and family helping to pick up the harvest. Her other activity of enjoyment was maintaining the beauty of her flower garden, created and designed together with her husband and riding the golf cart around the property keeping check on her home and its surroundings.

   Surviving are her daughter, Elizabeth Starr Christen and husband Joe of Raleigh; and son, Dwayne Norvell Perry of Gainesville, VA. Also surviving are sisters, Marjorie Bunch and husband Emmett of Jacksonville, FL; Brenda H. Joyner, widow of Millard Joyner of Elizabeth City; Sisters-in-law, Linda M. Hollowell, widow of Roy Hollowell of Tyner; Paige Hollowell, widow of Marcel Hollowell of Edenton; Bessie T. Perry, widow of Thomas Perry of Edenton; and Audrey P. Leary, widow of both Carroll “Teeny Boy” Perry and Jack Leary of Edenton.

   Lillian was known as “Grandma” to her four granddaughters and had the privilege, along with her late husband, to see each one of them married and bring children into the world. She had a total of eight great-grandchildren and they lovingly called her “Grandma” or “Grammie”.

   Eldest granddaughter, Stephanie Elizabeth and husband Patrick Millikin have four children, Evan, Hope, Anna, and Owen, and Jessica Leigh and husband Carlos Macias have one son, Charlie, – these are the daughters of Starr Christen. Samantha Charlene and husband Mitchell Brown have two children, Lila and Maddox, and Christine Elizabeth and husband Jared Ziegler have one daughter, Savannah – these are the daughters of Dwayne Perry.

   Funeral service will be held on Saturday, September 24, 2022 at 11:00 a.m. in the chapel of Miller Funeral Home & Crematory, 735 Virginia Road in Edenton. Friends may visit with the family in the funeral home immediately following the service. A private burial next to Emmett will be in Beaver Hill Cemetery.

   In lieu of flowers, memorial donations can be made to the Hope Lodge McConnell-Raab Campus, American Cancer Society lodging facility used during Emmett’s treatment times.  Address is 930-A Wellness Drive, Greenville, NC 27834.  Or donations to the building fund of Rocky Hock Baptist Church, 113 Rocky Hock Church Road, Edenton, NC 27932.

   Online condolences may be made by visiting

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Service Schedule

Past Services

Funeral Service

Saturday, September 24, 2022

Starts at 11:00 am (Eastern time)

Miller Funeral Home & Crematory

735 Virginia Road, Edenton, NC 27932

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