Private family burial for Doris Yvonne Duckworth Tillis, 79, of Ashland City, Tenn., will be held in Henrietta, Tenn., with a memorial planned for a later date in Nashville, Tenn.

She died Aug. 28, 2019. 

Doris was born in Plant City, Fla., daughter of Lora Knight and James R. Duckworth, of Dover, where she spent her childhood and attended Turkey Creek High School. She married Mel Tillis, also of Dover, in 1957, and they moved to Nashville, Tenn., to supported his career as a country songwriter and musician.

Nicknamed the “Mixed Media Queen”, she saw art in every imaginable source and created over 1,000 original pieces, many on her handmade paper. 

She was an avid potter and designed tiles and built clay birdhouses. 

Her creative genius flowed through her writing of stories and songs, sculpting, painting, designing and planting colorful gardens, inviting habitats for birds and delightful, whimsical plays on nature wherever she lived. 

She was known among Nashville artists, studied at Watkins Art Institute and was a winner of the Curry Award in Stone Sculpture, and once taught a writing class to the homeless of Nashville.

She was preceded in death by her mother and father; sister, Delma and brother, Lowell Duckworth. 

Survivors include her children, Pamela Tillis Spicher (Matt), of Nashville, Tenn.; Connie Lynn Tillis, of Branson, Cindy Shorey (Kevin), Mel Tillis, Jr. (Madelyn) and Carrie April Tillis, all of Ashland City, Tenn.; brother, Charles Duckworth; sister, Dianne Lane; six grandchildren; one great-grandson and her most precious companion…JASPER, a rescued dog, who was always faithfully by her side.

Memorials, in lieu of flowers, may be made to Ridgecrest Summer Camps, P.O. Box 279, Ridgecrest, N.C. 28770 or The Caring People, P.O. Box 164, Branson, Mo. 65616.

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