August 17, 2022

Thelma (Sorah) Gilley, 90, passed away peacefully on Sunday, August 7, 2022, at Holston Valley Medical Center.

Thelma was a member of Oak Grove Baptist Church, & Loyal Ruth Sunday School Class. All these next organizations Thelma took joy in being a part of, and the family would like them recognized for the different missions and services they provide; A.F.G.E. Local 3316, Hotshots Photography Club, CHALIC, MEOC’s KinCare Program and RSVP, State AARPVolunteer for Lee, Scott, Wise, and the City of Norton. She was a dedicated volunteer providing service to anyone in need.

She was a dedicated volunteer and public servant, having retired from the Federal Government with almost 30 years of service with the Social Security Administration and Department of Labor; four years with Virginia State Government, and 10 years of service with private enterprises. Her work life, and volunteer service to our region will be remembered fondly.

Thelma was preceded in death by her parents, William Conley Sorah, and Grace Beatrice (Burton) Sorah, one daughter, Deborah Ann Gilley brothers, James Conley Sorah, Donald Wayne Sorah, Kenneth Sorah.

She is survived by her son, Dr. Michael Gilley (Amy Stephenson), Dexter Ramey (James Potter), sisters, Shirley Wallborn, Georgia Durham, Nancy Gilliam, other nieces nephews, close relatives and friends.

The family of Thelma Sorah Gilley will receive friends on Saturday, August 27 from 4:00 - 8:00 p.m. at Holding Funeral Home in Big Stone Gap for the visitation. During the visitation, it is requested that people come prepared to share memories about the life of Thelma Gilley.

The family asks that memorials be made in honor of Thelma to any of the following:

Grace Burton Sorah Memorial Scholarship, University of Virginia College at Wise, VA or Gilley/Sorah Scholarship, Mountain Empire Community College, Big Stone Gap, VA. , The American Legion United Methodist Church, or M.E.O.C.

An online registry is available for the family at

Holding Funeral Home is  honored to be serving the Gilley family.