Obituary for Loren Miller
Loren Joseph Miller, 92, died on Friday (May 12) in Leesburg, FL. He is survived by his loving wife and best friend Willi (Lila Kathleen (Willems) Miller) and his three children, James Loren, Thomas John, and Barbara Jo Miller, Jim's wife Donna and his two sons Andrew and William, Tom's wife Florey and their daughter Haven, and finally Toby, their beloved cat.
In his own words, this is how he summed up his life:
“I was born (October 20, 1924 to Fred and Alma Miller) in Washington, IL -- a Caterpillar town near Peoria. Played football, basketball and baseball in high school – as well as trumpet in the school band.
Entered the University of Illinois in the fall of 1942 and signed up for the Navy V-12 program. I was called to active duty in July 1943, assigned to Depauw University and then midshipman’s school at Columbia University, and after 90 intensive days commissioned Ensign USNR.
After small boat training, was assigned to the Pacific theater aboard an attack troop ship. The highlight was what never took place – the invasion of Japan – especially assigned to carry ashore the advanced beach party. Thank you Harry Truman!
After the war, I returned home to await my fall semester at U of I, got appendicitis, and there met my attending nurse – my wife of 59 years. (update: June 1st would have been their 70th wedding anniversary)
Graduated with a degree in education, but my teaching career was interrupted after the first week by the arrival of my son Jim. Taught science and coached basketball and baseball (plus volunteer fireman and drivers ed teacher) for six years at the high school in Serena IL (pop. 250) – during which son Tom and daughter Barb arrived.
Accepted position at Maine Township HS in Park Ridge, IL, a suburb of Chicago. Spent 26 years there, mostly as Science Dept. Chairman. Our most famed student was Hillary Rodham, a “Goldwater Gal” at that time. She graduated Valedictorian, and you all know the rest of the story!
Took early retirement and became a real estate broker, managing an ERA office, where my top sales agent was my wife, the nurse.
We retired to Hot Springs Village, AR and built our dream home on Lake Balboa. Spent 10 years enjoying golf, boating, church and friends.
Grandson Bill’s paralysis brought us to Leesburg to help Jim and his wife Donna as care providers. He’s been an inspiration and we’ve learned to love central Florida – a true home!”
Loren left out that, like his Dad, he was a master gardener and a lifelong fan of the Cubs, who finally blessed him with a World Championship last year. And he’s taking that Cubs “W” flag with him.
There will be a small celebration of his life Saturday, May 20th at 6:30 pm in Lake Harris Inn’s activity room. Pastor Bill Birdsall will preside. A brief reception will follow. In lieu of flowers, if you wish, please make a contribution to Hospice in his name.