Celebration of Life

Bernardette Thelma Kilgore was born on January 3, 1935 in Detroit, Michigan to Lillie Bell Martin and the Late Bishop George Washington Martin. She was the 8th of 12 children. Bernardette graduated from Inkster High School and attended Wayne State University in Detroit, Michigan majoring in English. Bernardette had many hobbies that she enjoyed; softball, tennis, cooking, crossword puzzle, playing her saxophone, and of course singing. She was employed in several fields of work. She worked for the Internal Revenue in the collections department; she was a dedicated employee at Northville Hospital as a nursing attendant. Lastly, she retired from Michigan Bell where she served in sales and customer service and later became a Supervisor in the repair department. While employed within Michigan Bell, Bernardette also formed a company choir who sang for many events throughout the city of Detroit.

Bernardette was first married to Charles Adams and to their union; they were blessed with one child Pamela. Some years later God blessed Bernardette to marry the absolute love of her life; Jessie E. Kilgore, Sr. and to this union, two children were born; Vivian, and Jessie Jr. Later Bernardette and Jessie decided they wanted more children and decided to adopt two sons, Deandre and Lamont.

Bernardette gave her life to Christ at a very young age starting her journey at Solomon’s Temple where her Pastor was Bishop Bonner. While a member of Solomon’s Temple, she sang with the original Joy Bells Choir. After several years there, God lead her to another church; the New Liberty Apostolic Faith Church pastored by the late Bishop G.M. Boone. While at New Liberty, Mother Kilgore participated in several auxiliaries and held many positions. Mother Kilgore was the Church Secretary, the Choir Director, and the Choir President. Mother Kilgore’s father; Bishop Martin began Pastoring in April 1934 in Detroit, MI then later in Flint, Mich, Inkster MI; after which he retired. After years had gone by the Lord spoke to Bishop Martin at the young age of 85 and instructed him to establish a new work Holy Temple Church of the living God in Jesus W.C. ( which stands for without controversy), Inc. and his daughter Bernardette believed, trusted and had faith in the call. Mother Kilgore even created the building design; she was very gifted and had many talents.

Bernardette Kilgore was a faithful and dedicated member who wore many hats. Mother Kilgore was again the Church Secretary, the Business Manager, the Choir Director, the Choir President, One of the main Cooks, You name it, and Mother Kilgore did it. Holy Temple is now under the leadership of her daughter, Pastor Pamela Dixon. After taking ill, Mother Kilgore decided to relocate with her daughter Vivian to Jackson, Mississippi. While in Mississippi, Mother Kilgore attended True Light Church pastored by Pastor Marcus Cheeks. However, she remained a member of Holy Temple Church until her transition. Mother Kilgore was very loved by every church she served with and we be greatly missed by all who were blessed to come in contact with her.

Bernardette was preceded in death by parents; George and Lillie Bell Martin, siblings; George Martin, Jr. (Melvina), Cornelia Matthews (Vaughn), Ruth Williams (Hampton), Betty Waters (Nick), Janet Lampkin (Cecil), Jaqueline Knight (Robert), Jean Johnson (Levi), and her baby brother Hamil Martin.

She leaves to cherish her memories her five loving children; Pamela Dixon (Samuel), Vivian Townsend (Morris), Dr. Jessie E. Kilgore, Jr., Deandre Woods, and Lamont Hatton. She leaves 8 grandchildren; PamKenyon Logan, Ernest H. Edmond IV (Donna), Jessica Mathis, Samuel Dixon, Jr., Krystal Dixon, Tiffany Townsend, Jessie Kilgore III, and Denae Kilgore. She leaves 7 great Grandchildren; Dylan, Jailyn, Peyton, Ernest V (Cinco), Maurion, Chayse, and Deandre Jr. and a host of nieces, nephews, other relatives and friends.