Pearl H. Corley

July 19, 1921December 20, 2019

COLUMBIA – Pearl Hilbun Corley, 98, died peacefully at her home on Friday, December 20, 2019. She was born in Laurens County, Georgia on July 19, 1921 to Bennett Madison and Eva King Hilbun. She was a direct descendent of Revolutionary patriot Joel Guilliam McLemore, who was the first sheriff of Richland County. After moving to Columbia during World War II, she married Henry Herman Corley. During their forty-eight year marriage, Pearl assisted Herman in his construction business and Myrtle Beach motel businesses. Before marriage, she worked as a cosmetologist and she later taught at the Farah Beauty schools on Sumter Street and in St. Andrews. She and Herman were members of Virginia Wingard United Methodist Church since 1954. Pearl was an excellent cook, famous for her Red Velvet Cakes. She enjoyed gardening right up to her last month. She was a member and officer of the Mixed Bouquet Garden Club during the 1950s. She dearly loved playing bridge and her buddies in the neighborhood who joined her at the bridge table.

She leaves behind one daughter, Andrena Wilkins (John) of Charlotte and one son, John Evan Corley of Chapin. She is survived by six grandchildren: Stephanie Hoerner (Brian) of Charleston, Brian Wilkins of Charlotte, John Thomas Corley of Chapin, Emily Wilkins and Carrie Birkhimer of Charlotte, and Jennifer Gunter (Chris) of Lexington. She is also survived by five great-grandchildren: Easton Hoerner, Gavin and Abby Birkhimer, and Corley and Parker Gunter. She is also survived by numerous nieces and nephews. They, and many of their friends, referred to her as “Aunt Pearl.” She was predeceased by her six siblings, her husband, and one great-granddaughter.

The family will receive visitors on Saturday, December 28, 2019 at 2:00 p.m. prior to her memorial service at 3:00 p.m. at Virginia Wingard United Memorial Methodist Church, 1500 Broad River Road, Columbia, SC 29210. In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to Virginia Wingard United Methodist or to a church or charity of your choice.

Elmwood Funeral Home and Cremation Service is assisting the family with arrangements.


  • Virginia Wingard United Memorial Methodist Church
  • Church or charity of your choice


  • Visitation Saturday, December 28, 2019
  • Memorial Service Saturday, December 28, 2019


Pearl H. Corley

have a memory or condolence to add?