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What gospel-legend Maggie Ingram’s daughter would like us to remember about her mother

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RICHMOND, Va -- Celebrated gospel singer Maggie Ingram passed away in her Richmond home, Tuesday evening, June 23.

Ingram's daughter, Reverend Almeta Ingram-Miller, sat down with CBS 6 to share just how remarkable of a life and impact her mother had.

According to her daughter, Ingram,  born to sharecroppers on a cotton plantation in Georgia in 1930, touched more lives than she ever could have predicted. After moving to Richmond, Virginia with her five children, Ingram began singing gospel music with her kids. Ingram-Miller described her mother's work as a "ministry of service."

"Singing at the prison camps, and going to the bible studies, and taking her five children with her. Everywhere we went, just touching someone's life," said Ingram-Miller.

Maggie Ingram

Maggie Ingram was not just a performer, she also was an entrepreneur and ran a daycare center at one time. Ingram-Miller says this too was a part of her life of service.

"We run into people now in their forties who say, 'You don't know me, but I used to be one of your mom's daycare kids, and she blessed my life," said Ingram-Miller.

Ingram also had an honorary doctor of musical arts degree and several awards, despite not having the opportunity to advance past seventh grade in school.

After being pulled out of school in third grade to work in the fields, Ingram went back to school in the 1960s in Richmond, just to show her children that if she could do it, they could.

Ingram-Miller says education was very important to her mother, and something she always encouraged of her children.

"She saw to it that all of us, we graduated high school, we've gone on to college, some of us are ordained ministers, we're ordained ministers of music."

Ingram's daughter says the reason behind all of this was to make sure her children got an education so that they would be able to help other people. Helping people is exactly what Ingram's children aim to do.

Though Ingram-Miller is the only original child of Ingram still performing with Maggie Ingram and the Ingramettes, her granddaughter Cheryl performs with the group. This means the group has three generations of Ingram's performing. Maggie Ingram is now gone, but Ingram-Miller wants people to know that they plan to continue singing and celebrating her mother's legacy.

Maggie and the Girls Pics 2011-05-21

Ingram-Miller would most like people to remember her mother's "life of service".

"A life of waking up every morning and saying, 'Lord, what is it I can do for you today to make this world better?,'" said Ingram-Miller.

Maggie Ingram would have been 85 years old this July 4. The funeral will be held at 11 a.m.  on Thursday, July 2, at St. Paul's Baptist Church on Creighton Road.

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