Elizabeth Williams Riley

Published 8:41 am Wednesday, April 24, 2024

Funeral services for Mrs. Elizabeth “Liz” Williams Riley were conducted at 11 a.m. Wednesday morning, April 17, 2024, at New Hebron Baptist Church with Bro. Mike Grenn officiating, assisted by Bro Earl Clark and Bro. Jeremy Knowles.  Interment followed in the New Hebron Cemetery.

Mrs. Riley, age 76, entered into the eternal rest of her Lord late Saturday evening, April 13, 2024, at the University of Mississippi Medical Center in Jackson.  Saulters Moore Funeral Home was entrusted with arrangements.

The family received friends Tuesday evening, beginning at 6 p.m. until 8 p.m. and Wednesday morning, beginning at 9 a.m. until the hour of service at 11 a.m., all at New Hebron Baptist Church.

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Mrs. Riley was carried to her final rest by those serving as pallbearers; they included Drew Mayhugh, Matthew Emerson, Dillon Quinn, Hunter Quinn, Eric Lee, Kade Jones, Chase Riley and Michael Rushing.  Honorary pallbearers included Corey Riley, Brad Webb, Steve Smith and Ben Smith.

Mary Elizabeth Riley was born on May 11, 1947, in Newton County, to Joseph Henry and Bessie Doolittle Williams.  She graduated from Decatur High School before furthering her education at Draughon’s Business College in Jackson. It was there that she met the love of her life, John Mark Riley, Sr., with whom she embarked on a journey filled with love, success, and family.

Elizabeth and John Mark were not only partners in marriage but also in business. Together, they owned and operated Riley Florist in New Hebron for several years. Their entrepreneurial ventures did not end there; they delved into the world of auctions through their company Magnolia Auctions.

Whether working as dealers, auctioneers, or bidding on storage building contents, she approached every task with determination and passion. Additionally, they ventured into candle making and also owned a variety store in New Hebron.

“Liz”, as she was known to so many that loved her, was an icon of strength, love and grace. Her happy place was around the dining table surrounded by loved ones. Food was her love language, and her famous dressing was just one of her dishes her family will always remember. Sundays after church were a special time at her home.

Family and friends were always welcome to gather around her table where the food was abundant and joy was in great supply. 

Serving her family was Mrs. Riley’s heartbeat.  Not only does her son fondly remember how she always ensured there were three hot meals on the table each day; but her grandchildren recall how she would prepare what each of them wanted to eat at any given meal.

In addition to her parents, Mrs. Riley is preceded in death by her beloved husband of 52 years, John Mark Riley Sr., her daughter, Rhonda Riley Mayhugh; a great-grandson, John Hendrix Mayhugh and her brother, Roy Williams.

Her memory will forever be cherished by her son, John Mark Riley Jr. (Candy) of Silver Creek; her sister, Phyllis Runyon (Gary) of Blountville, Tennessee and her sisters-in-law, Mary Nell Myers of Brandon and Charlotte Riley of New Hebron.  The legacy of their Mawmaw will also live on through the grandchildren she adored, Dillon and Macy Quinn, Hunter and Tiffany Quinn, Destiny and Eric Lee, Hannah Riley, Hailey and Matthew Emerson, Chloe and Kade Jones, Chase Riley and his fiancé, Halley Williams, Drew Mayhugh, Anna Mayhugh and her great-grandchildren, Van Mayhugh, Addison Quinn, Blakelyn Riley, Hayden Lee, Jagger Mayhugh, Paisley Smith, Harleigh Pruski, Levi Smith and Dennis Ridge Quinn.

Online condolences and a guest registry are available at www.saultersmoorefuneralhome.com