Mary Lee Gilbert was born on Jan. 26, 1921, in Savannah, Georgia, a daughter of the late James Davis and Estelle Ingram of Lee County.

Raised in a Christian home, she accepted Christ at an early age and loved the Lord with all of her heart. She attended the public schools of Lee County. Mrs. Mary later married the love of her life, the late Emil Gilbert. While living in New York, Mary was a devoted member of Epworth United Methodist Church in Bronx, New York. She also attended Culinary School of Arts. Mrs. Gilbert relocated to South Carolina, where she joined and rendered faithful service to Allen Chapel AME Church. Mother Gilbert was an entrepreneur. She started her own catering service while living in Bronx and continued after she relocated back to South Carolina.

On Wednesday, May 8, 2019, God almighty dispatched his angels to Earth to bring Mother Gilbert to her heavenly home.

She leaves to cherish her memory: a daughter, Chynelle Gilbert of Sumter; a special nephew, Wayne Johnson of the home; two grandchildren, Jenelle Settles of Lawrenceville, Georgia, and Brandon Finney of Sumter; three great-grandchildren, Ashelia, Justin and Jahi, all of Lawrenceville; two dear friends, Edna Evans and Virginia Jackson; and a host of other relatives and friends.

In addition to her parents and husband, Mother Gilbert was preceded in death by two sisters and three brothers.

Public viewing will be held from 1 to 3 p.m. today at Job's Mortuary.

Mrs. Gilbert will be placed in the church at noon on Wednesday for viewing until the hour of service.

Funeral services will be held at 1 p.m. on Wednesday at Allen Chapel AME Church, 471 Lynam Road, Sumter, SC 29154 with the Rev. Dr. Harold Wilson officiating and Presiding Elder Samuel McPherson, eulogist. Interment will follow at Allen Chapel Church Cemetery.

The family will receive friends at the home, 2345 Toxaway Drive, Sumter, SC 29154.

Job's Mortuary Inc., 312 S. Main St., Sumter, is in charge of arrangements.

Online memorials may be sent to the family at or visit us on the web at