She died March 23, 2020, at University of Tennessee Medical Center in Knoxville, Tennessee, after a sudden illness. She was raised in the Long Island Community of Kingsport. Karen attended Sullivan High School. She worked in Kingsport before moving to Newport, Tennessee, and working for a number of years. In 2005, she returned to Kingsport and in 2011 she was reunited with the love of her life, Billy Gillespie. They were married from November 25, 2011, until his death, November 21, 2018.
She is also preceded in death by her mother, Bettye Lambert Hunley; and maternal grandparents, Henry and Maude Lambert.
Karen is survived by her sister and brother-in-law, Judy and Wayne Larkins; sister-in-law, Phyllis Gillespie; brother-in-law, Gorden Gillespie; a host of nieces, nephews, great nieces, great nephews, and agreat-great-niece and great-great-nephew.
Karen was a member of Vermont United Methodist Church in Kingsport, where a memorial service will take place at a later date.
A private burial, for family only, will take place March 26, 2020, at Vermont Church Cemetery with Rev. Jeremy McMillan officiating.
In lieu of flowers, you may make a donation to a charity of your choice.
Please visit www.hamlettdobson.com to leave an online condolence for the family.
Hamlett-Dobson, Kingsport is serving the family of Karen Irene Hunley Gillespie.