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- "I said we didn't have to fight for another place."
- —Lilly to Philip regarding his decision to attack the prison.[src]
Lilly was a soft-spoken woman who looked out for the best interests of her family. She was seemingly oblivious to the grim realities of the outside world, and as such, lacked the necessary skills to survive.
Lilly worked as a nurse, having specialized in oncology for years she had been married to a man with whom she had a daughter named Meghan. Three and a half years prior to the outbreak, her husband abandoned their family. Around this same time, Lilly's father, David, was diagnosed with terminal cancer.
During the initial stages of the outbreak, Lilly hid out with Meghan, David, and her younger sister, Tara, in her apartment complex. They relied primarily on one of the food trucks that David had driven for a living. For about a year the family spent their days in the apartment, relying on candles for lighting and making the most out of their circumstances. While Lilly continually watched over Meghan and ailing David, Tara tried to clear their area of walkers, but didn't know they had to be shot in the head, so they kept getting back up. At some point, Meghan stopped talking, possibly from the horrors she might have witnessed. The family played board games to try to make her feel better and get her talking again.
Lilly is first seen in her apartment with Tara, Meghan, and David. She is immediately cautious of the stranger (The Governor, calling himself "Brian Herriot"---a name he saw scrawled on the side of a barn during his travels before discovering the Chambler family) that knocks on their apartment door, and doesn't hesitate to collect his weapons after he relinquishes them to her. He has long hair and a scraggly beard and calls himself "Brian". Lilly offers Brian food and he returns the favor by getting the backgammon game from upstairs for her dad and Meghan. While upstairs, he finds a gun and keeps it. The next morning, Lilly comes in and tries to give his gun back, but Brian tells her to keep it because he saw she needed one. He also explains to her that they need to shoot walkers in the head to kill them. Lilly asks him to go to the nursing home a few blocks away and get oxygen tanks for her dad. He does and is almost killed. His head is injured and she tends to him. He bonds with Meghan. Brian is seen later sitting at their kitchen table, teaching Meghan how to play chess. All the while, he can't seem to take his eyes off Lilly. He has cut his scruffy beard and hair and his head wound has healed. Lilly and Tara's dad dies and they didn't know he would turn. "Brian" saved them by bashing his head in with an oxygen tank. Lilly helps "Brian" bury her dad. After that, they all went on the road to find a better place. They pull the truck over for the night. After Meghan and Tara are asleep, Lilly and "Brian", after much sexual tension between them, make love in the van. The next morning, the van won't start and they have to walk. They run into walkers coming from a turn on the road. Tara falls and sprains her ankle. Lilly helps her up and the two stumble into the woods with "Brian" and Meghan. They get separated from "Brian" and Meghan in the woods, who fall into a walker pit. He kills them all with his bare hands. When it's over, he looks up and sees his old Woodbury lackey, Martinez, standing there.
Lilly joins Martinez' camp after he finds Philip and her family in a forest near the camp. Lilly sets up a Nurse Station for the camp. She is convinced by Philip to leave the group with her family and Alisha, told that it's not safe there, but returns after they find a group of walkers trapped in the mud. She is present when the group discuss about the camp's leadership after Martinez' death and when a walker sneaks inside the camp and grab Meghan's leg.
Lilly is initially against Philip trying to take over the prison, but finally she seems to have accepted it reluctantly. In order to keep her and Meghan safe, Philip settles them along a river (which walkers cannot cross). When a walker attempts to cross the river, Lilly is alerted of it and is distracted away from Meghan calling her. Simultaneously, Meghan is playing with a puddle of mud, but is bitten on the shoulder arm by a walker buried in the mudslide. A grievous Lilly rushes down towards Meghan and kills the walker, but it is too late to save Meghan.
Later, during the final assault and subsequent destruction of the Prison, Lilly arrives in a car, witnesses the beheading of Hershel Greene (by the Governor with Michonne's katana), and distracts him from Hershel's corpse by presenting Meghan's, which she carries in her arms. Philip, seemingly shocked at the sight of the dead Meghan, drops Michonne's sword and walks to his erstwhile daughter--before taking her away from Lilly and disdainfully shooting her (before the shocked and appalled Lilly) in the head to prevent reanimation. Near the end of the Fall of the Prison, Michonne blindsides the Governor with her sword as he strangles Rick Grimes to the point of death---impaling him from behind before leaving him to die or be set upon by walkers. However, a distraught Lilly walks over to the dying Governor and delivers mercy killing by a gunshot through the head. Later, after the attack is over and the prison survivors have escaped, Glenn finds Tara and informs him that Lilly committed suicide by allowing the walkers to surround and devour her.
This list shows the victims Lilly has killed:
- Herself (Suicide)
Soon after the battle is over and the prison survivors had escaped, Lilly finds The Governor dying and suffering on the ground and angrily shoots him. With the loss of her entire family (not knowing Tara is still alive), she decides to commit suicide by letting the walkers devour her. Tara later mentions to Glenn that she helplessly saw her sister getting devoured on the fields.
- "Dad, your oxygen tank. Do you not see that red sticker? I'll be damned if a Merit Ultra Menthol is gonna blow this place up after all the work we've done to stay alive up here, okay?"
- —Lilly to David.[src]
Lilly loved her father and protected him during the days of the apocalypse. She also saw her father's welfare as being integral to her daughter's well-being, as evidenced by speculating that Meghan's lack of appetite was due to terror over the prospect of her grandfather dying and relating that only he could put a smile on Meghan's face when convincing Philip to retrieve oxygen tanks for her father from a nearby nursing home. Lilly was saddened of her father's death, but eventually moved on.
- "She didn't eat, again. She's not picky, she's terrified."
- —Lilly to Tara about Meghan.[src]
Lilly completely loves her daughter Meghan and does whatever is necessary to protect her in a post-apocalyptic world. Lilly constantly cares and worries for Meghan's quiet condition, and feels that she is scared of the state of the world they are living in. Lilly strengthens her resolve and is determined to keep Meghan safe, no matter what. Lilly was devastated of Meghan's death, and felt that she couldn't protect her own daughter, which ultimately led to her suicide.
- "All I saw was my sister in that field. She wasn't supposed to be there. She had a gun, but they just...swarmed her."
- —Tara to Glenn about her sister.[src]
Lilly is Tara's sister and they are shown to clash due to their differing personalities. Lilly often appears to scold Tara on her use of swear words in front of Meghan and her attitude towards "Brian". Despite this, Lilly and Tara had a sisterly relationship and clearly loved each other. It is clear that Tara trusts her sister with knowledge of her sexual orientation and other details of her private life. After Tara sprained her leg Lilly offered to look after her. Tara is clearly saddened at the loss of her sister and shuts down after watching her die.
- "I saw the picture, Brian. You had a family - I know that, and I know we're not them. But for now you're stuck with us."
- —Lilly to Philip.[src]
Lilly is initially wary of Philip, but after the man helps her family several times, she seems to be grateful and grows fond of him. He's the one who reveals to her that everyone is infected and it takes brain damage to kill the walkers. She insists that he allow her family to travel with him for protection after David's tragic death. In the truck at night, she starts a sexual relationship with Philip for solace.
Later, when Philip leads an assault on the prison, Lilly shows up with Meghan, who was bitten after Philip settled them to a riverside by a walker buried in a mudslide. Phillip shoots Meghan in the head, in order to prevent her reanimation. After the brutal onslaught ensued leaving many dead, Lilly found Philip lying in the grass after he was stabbed and left bleeding to death by Michonne. She then shoots Philip with his own gun for his part in the death of her daughter.
- "You've done all right here. I mean this camp. It's the first time I've felt safe since all this started."
- —Lilly to Martinez.[src]
Initially, Martinez was surprised to see Lilly and her family with "Brian," but he agreed to let them join the camp. He seemed to have a friendly, mutually respectful relationship with Lilly. As the group bonded over drinks, she praised him for the safe life he'd helped create for the people around him. Phillip's unnerved reaction to their conversation suggests this may have been one of the factors leading to his murder of Martinez later that day.
- The casting call for this character used the name Laura.
- Lilly Chambler is based off of two separate characters from The Walking Dead universe. The first is a character in the novel, Rise of the Governor, April Chalmers. The second is Lilly Caul, a character from the comic series.
- Kirkman revealed that Lilly killed The Governor out of vengeance rather than pity.
- Lilly is the fourth mother in the series to outlive her child, the first being Michonne, the second being Carol Peletier, and the third being the Crying Mom.
- Lilly is the final character in the series to die at the Prison.