Margaret Stephenson

May 27, 1939 ~ November 12, 2020 (age 81)


Margaret Stephenson (née Gillon), 81, passed away peacefully on November 12, 2020 in Davenport, Iowa. She was the wife of Mel Stephenson. They shared 61 years of marriage together and have a son and daughter, Bob and Shelley.

A service to celebrate her life will be held at 1:00 P.M. on Monday, November 16, 2020 at the McGinnis-Chambers Funeral Home in Bettendorf, Iowa.  Burial will be at the Rock Island National Cemetery.  Visitation will be from 12:00 P.M. to 1:00 P.M. on Monday at the funeral home.  Her service will be livestreamed and may be viewed by clicking the link at the bottom of this page.

Born May 27, 1939 in Buffalo, New York, she was the daughter of Scottish immigrants Henry Park Gillon and Elizabeth (Bannatyne) Gillon. She had an older brother and sister, Alec and Maisie. They moved to Pasadena, California when she was 10.

It was in California where she met a young man who said he was FBI, which she found out soon after meant “farm boy from Iowa”. His true identity was Mel Stephenson, a Marine stationed in Barstow, California.

After they married, they moved to Des Moines, Iowa and then to Bettendorf. She worked as a book keeper for an accountant and later, she and Mel established MOS, Inc., an office services business. She oversaw the finances while he pounded the pavement. (He still claims he is owed 18 years of back pay.)

She was a devoted Christian and was a recent member of Pleasant View Baptist Church. She enjoyed studying the Bible, listening to hymns she grew up with, and loved the Lord with all her heart.

Marge was an avid knitter and enjoyed many creative hobbies that she shared with her children. There was always some fun craft project to keep everyone busy. She created and wrote a knitting newsletter long before computers came on the scene. She loved finding graphic images to make her newsletters more engaging. This surely influenced her daughter to later study design.

She will be remembered for her quick wit and sense of humor. She loved to tease and laugh. All her friends and family loved this about her. Even up to the end, she was giving the nurses and staff a hard time at the Good Samaritan Nursing home, where they took excellent care of her. She also maintained her sense of humor on all the calls she had with her family while they were unable to visit in person due to the pandemic.

Even though there were visitation restrictions because of Covid, she did not pass alone as her family was granted compassionate care visits. We are very grateful for this.

She is survived by her husband, Mel Stephenson; her son, Bob Stephenson; and her daughter, Shelley Hanna. She was preceded in death by her parents, Henry and Elizabeth Gillon; her brother, Alexander Gillon; and her sister, Mary “Maisie” Peterson.

In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to Hope at the BRICK House – giving hope to individuals and families through spiritual, educational and community-based support which includes after school/summer programs & neighborhood outreach.

You can send donations to Hope at the BRICK House, 1431 N Ripley St, Davenport, IA 52803 or on their website at

To send flowers to Margaret's family, please visit our floral store.


November 16, 2020

12:00 PM to 1:00 PM
McGinnis-Chambers Funeral Home
644 River Dr.
Bettendorf, Iowa 52722

Celebration of Life
November 16, 2020

1:00 PM
McGinnis-Chambers Funeral Home
644 River Dr.
Bettendorf, Iowa 52722

Video is available for this event

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