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Margaret Gilliam Turner

April 12, 1938 — March 31, 2024

Margaret Gilliam Turner

   Margaret Gilliam Turner, born Margaret Eleanor Alley, and also known as “Bug” of Elizabeth City, NC, and previously of Louisburg, NC passed away Sunday morning, March 31, 2024.

   Born a tiny premature baby on April 12, 1938, Bug was the daughter of the late Johnny and Bessie Flow Alley of Franklin County having lived near Louisburg, NC. As an infant, she was small enough to fit in a saltine cracker box and slept in an open drawer in her mom’s dresser. She was indeed a miracle from God since the day of her birth.

   In addition to her parents, she was preceded in death by her husband of 32 years, Jimmy Gilliam, and later her husband of 25 years, Carlton Kentwood Turner; a stepson, Mark Turner; and her two brothers, John “Big Boy” and Billy Alley.

   Margaret worked through many hard times in her life and managed to feed her immediate family and sometimes several of her extended family on a meager income. She learned and taught that respect, integrity, love, and determination are the glue that holds good people together. Margaret was known and loved by many, and especially by the multitude of folks she worked with in the textile industry for most of her adult life. 

   Late in life, at retirement age, she was re-acquainted with an old friend and widower of her deceased cousin Nancy Flow Turner. They fell in love, married, and became the leaders of the Turner family in Elizabeth City for the next 25 years. She truly loved each member of the Turner family like her own flesh and blood.

   Margaret also answered the call to accept Jesus Christ as her Lord as well as her Savior. This marked her life, and the lives of many who knew her. Though not perfect, as neither are any of us, but she knew that Jesus’ death, burial, and resurrection was the only way to eternal life. In John 14: 6 Jesus said “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” If she could ask one question today it would be, “Have you accepted Jesus as your Lord, and Savior?”

   Surviving are her two sons, Ronnie Gilliam and wife Pam and Johnny Gilliam and wife Susan; two step-sons, Forrest Turner and wife Barbara and Carl Turner and wife Kitty; a step-daughter- in-law, Wrenn Turner; three grandchildren, Jimmy Gilliam, Teressa Callahan (Ricky), and Mayla Gilliam (Billy McCormick); eight step-grandchildren, Allie, Lauren, Ashton, Cade, Carlton, Nancy, Anna, and Robert; five great-grandchildren Maddi, Bailey, and Avery Gilliam; Ricky and Christopher Callahan; three step-great-grandchildren, Evan, Camden, and Waylon; two very special nieces, Cheryl Bowers (whom Margaret raised from a child) and Cathy Smith.

   A memorial service will be held Sunday, April 7, at 2:00 p.m. in Mount Gilead Baptist Church, 2545 NC Hwy 561, Louisburg, NC. Friends may visit with the family in the church fellowship hall immediately following the service.

   Another service to celebrate her life will be held Sunday, April 14, at 2:00 p.m. in New Life Assembly of God, 1958 N. Road St., Elizabeth City, NC. Friends may visit with the family in the church fellowship hall immediately following the service.

   In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made either to New Life Assembly of God, 1958 N. Road St, Elizabeth City NC 27909 or Mount Gilead Baptist Church, P.O Box 564, Louisburg, NC 27549.

   Online condolences may be made by visiting

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Memorial Service

Sunday, April 14, 2024

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