Christian 03

Vail Hope Ellis

April 26, 1927 ~ May 2, 2022 (age 95)


Vail Hope Ellis, 95, went home to be with the Lord, Monday, May 2, 2022 at her home in Sunset Hills.  She will be deeply missed by all who knew and loved her. Vail leaves a rich legacy of faith, family and friendship. The family will receive friends 1:45 to 2:45 followed by the celebration of Vail’s life Saturday, May 7, 2022, at Rich & Thompson Funeral Home, 306 Glenwood Ave., Burlington, NC 27215.

Vail was born April 26, 1927 to the Reverend Robert Virgil and Lillie Freeman Hope in Humboldt, TN. Her family moved to Washington, NC when she was a young girl. She fell in love with Eastern Carolina and spent many summers with her extended family on the Pamlico River. Vail attended the Women’s College of the University of North Carolina  (WC)  finishing in 1949. She remained in Greensboro taking her first job as director of the women’s recreational program at Cone Mills. It was there that she met the love of her life, Jim Ellis. They were married in 1950.  Their lives were forever changed after attending the Billy Graham Crusade that was held in Greensboro in the fall of 1951. Vail was a devoted wife, mother and friend. She was active in church and committed to sharing her faith in her everyday living. Hospitality was her passion. She was always a gracious hostess, known for her famous tea biscuits, waffles, pound cakes & Carolina Cousin Candies. The  Ellis home was always open was to all.   Vail inspired others with her unique ability to extend grace, love and forgiveness in all circumstances.  Her infectious smile and sweet spirit brought joy to all.  Vail’s deep and abiding faith in Christ molded her into the amazing woman everyone knew and loved.

Vail was involved in various Christian and Civic organizations. She was an advocate for the unborn and tirelessly volunteered with BirthRight International of Greensboro.  In 1969, she joined the Rachel Caldwell NSDAR chapter.  In December of 1972, she was a proud founding  member of Colonel Arthur Forbis National Society Daughters of the American Revolution Chapter of Greensboro.  As a member, she participated in raising funds to secure the property at the site of the original David Caldwell Log College. The property was later gifted to the city of Greensboro and  is now known as the Bicentennial Gardens. In later years, she was affiliated and served in leadership roles in NSDAR Chapters in Southport, NC and Marietta, GA.   Vail held numerous local and state level offices within these organizations: The Vail Historical Foundation, The Clan Moffat Society, Colonial Dames XVII Century and  First Families of Tennessee. 

Along with her parents, Vail was also preceded in death by her husband, James Nicholas Ellis, Jr.; as well her beloved daughter, Vail Allen Ellis Covington;  brothers Bob Hope , Frank Freeman Hope; niece Lee Ann Hope Brodbeck.

Vail is survived by her children Nick Ellis (JoEllen) ,
Kathy Smith ( Steve), Cam Solms ( John) and June Curlott ( Joe) and son in law Milton Covington; nephew Frank Hope; first cousin Reid Solomon; Grandchildren - Josh Covington (Amy), Vali Paquette ( Jared), Cami Smith , James Ellis (Erin), Clifton Remole (Brittany), Gavin Smith ( Bradleigh) , Joseph Curlott (Crystal), Katharine Bryan (Beau) ,  Elizabeth King ( Jeff ), Clay Remole, John Solms, AnneTaylor Smith, Stephen Solms( Grace) and James Curlott; Great grandchildren- Brody Smith, Reid Covington, Stetson Remole, Will Bryan, Nathan Bryan, Tommy Bryan, Ellis Covington, Savannah Remole, Vail King, Avery Curlott , Andrew Bryan, Simone King,Jack Solms, Emersyn Curlott and Owen Curlott ; and a large extended family.  

The Ellis family extends thanks to AuthoraCare of Greensboro and a special thanks to Susan Collins for her tender loving care.   Memorial Contributions may be made to THE PREGNANCY NETWORK, Vail Ellis memorial, 625 Fulton St., Greensboro, NC 27401

Condolences may be offered online at

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May 7, 2022

1:45 PM to 2:45 PM
Rich & Thompson in Burlington
306 Glenwood Avenue
Burlington, NC 27215

May 7, 2022

3:00 PM
Rich and Thompson Chapel
306 Glenwood Ave.
Burlington, NC 27215

Video is available for this event


Pine Hill

Burlington, NC

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