April 22: Fannie Gilliss (1926)

The May 1926 Parish Guide recorded the death of Fannie Gilliss: “On Thursday evening, April 22, Miss Fannie Gilliss entered into rest. There was perhaps no one connected with Epiphany Church who was better known or more universally beloved than this saintly woman who, as the close of her earthly life approached, went forth to meet death with a most triumphant faith and glorious serenity. Her passing was a veritable benediction and those who were privileged to be near her during her last few days will never forget her radiant face as she talked of the full life she had had and of the fuller life into which she was so soon to enter. Miss Gilliss was the first person to be baptized in Epiphany Church by the Rev. Dr. French, first Rector, and during a period of more than four score years she supplemented her faith with every kind of noble endeavor for the furtherance of the Kingdom of God in this dear old Parish she so truly loved.”

Fannie Gilliss was the fourth child of James and Rebecca Gilliss, founding members of Epiphany and present at the laying of the church’s cornerstone in 1843. During her life, Fannie served as the sponsor for at least 15 baptisms at Epiphany of non-family members. She lived through nine Epiphany rectors and was baptized, confirmed and buried from the church before her interment in the family plot at Oak Hill Cemetery.

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