Dean & Georgie
Dean MillerA memorial by his son
This is a memorial to the
life of a great and noble soul--my father, Lawrence Dean Miller. He
prefered to be called Dean or officially, L. Dean Miller. For the last
fifteen years of his life he and I, Larry (his one and only son), grew
very close together. Maybe it was part of his feeling more vulnerable
as a part of aging or because of the mental decline of his wife, my
mother, Georgie Miller (d. 2005). This is a small tribute to the passing
of a geat soul who for 88 years championed the way of peace, political
and social justice, organic agriculture, natural health living, and
so much more. From the time my dad drew in his first breath that long
ago July 5th day in 1919 to the moment he exhaled his last breath the
night of December 30th, 2007, he lived a full life that simply cannot
be contained in these paragraphs, but I'll try.
Georgina Collazo Miller
Dear family and friends,
Georgina Collazo Miller (Georgie) passed away the evening of May 21, 2005. She died peacefully while in her son Larry's arms.
We had been saying a slow farewell to the Georgie we all knew and loved for the last ten years since the onset of Alzheimers. She continued to be sweet and loving til her passing. She had a very debilitating stroke in February of 2005 and was put on hospice care in Jeanette and Paul's home outside of San Diego, CA. Larry and Jeanette have been Georgie's and Dean's main caregivers since moving out to California in May of 2004.
We are so greatful for all the years we had with Georgie and will miss her presence greatly. We will always remember her vivacious personality and her compassionate heart. She took in strangers and fed them, sent clothing to those in need and always had an open home to share. She would hug and kiss strangers to the mortification of her kids. Now we understand that her spirit could not be contained. She was an angel of unbounded light. She loved all of you.
Georgie (Mom) always wanted to write a book about her life and its many adventures. Unfortunately, this book never got written. But it can be said that she would have wanted to be remembered as a courageous young woman who came to the U.S. from Puerto Rico as a student nurse and received the key to the city of Philadelphia, PA.
She would also love to be remembered as the young newly wed traveling to an unknown land as a missionary and nurse. While in the Philippines, she grew to love the people and country as she ministered to the sick in a small clinic. Sometimes she would hike far into the mountainous countryside to nurse and deliver babies.
In the 1970's Georgie had foresight to see that a healthy body could be cultivated through food supplements and simple foods. Shaklee came into our lives and for over 25 years or so allowed them to share this way of life with many people. They were able to travel and prosper.
She always loved her family and friends in Pueto Rico and if she had been able she would have spent more time there visiting in these twilight years of her life.
Her love of God, the church, and music were primary in her life. Her face would light up in church when the music played and the voices joined together in praise.
As mentioned earlier, Georgie desired to write a book, which, alas, never bore fruit. It is safe to say that all her children share a collective guilt of not doing their part in bringing it to fruition. But as a tribute, we invite any and all of you who carry special memories or thoughts of our beloved Georgie to please write it down and send it to us. As we are all so far apart (geographically speaking), this can be our way of sharing in love and appreciation. We will enjoy reading your sweet memories about her. We know she will be pleased. Eventually we will compile all these missives and make the book of living memories she always wanted.
With her decline, she and Dean seemed to have faded from many of our lives. For now Dean is living at Larry's home. Larry hopes to take Dean to visit his boyhood home in Shelbyville, IL. He has two brothers and one sister surviving. Dean turns 87 in 2006, God willing.
was born officially on March 20, 1928that's when her mom went down
from the mountains and recorded it at the courthouse. Her mother used
to say Georgie was born around December 27, 1927. But Georgie always went
by the March 20th date.
Here are her brothers and
"Georgie and Dean were just like glue. They always stuck together.
"No matter when I saw Georgie, she would always welcome me with a warm hug. She and Dean contributed so much to the Shaklee family.
"Georgie did my first Spanish meeting graciously, because being Black, I needed all the help I could get to communicate to my group. Both their kindnesses will never be forgotten!"
Dean & Georgie's house at the corner of South Galena Avenue and East Pleasant Street in Freeport.
Most of the things I remember from my childhood aren't all happy memories. My parents divorced when I was still a baby, and my mom's family was still in the Philippines. So I really didn't have family in Chicago. I was too young at the time to appreciate the welcome and opportunities our church family gave my mom and me, but one family that really became family were the Millers.
Grandpa Dean and Grandma Georgie and Uncle Larry basically took us in even before my mom and uncle Larry got married. Grandma Georgie and Grandpa Dean treated me as if I was their real grand-daughter.
I remember when my mom worked the night shift at the bank downtown and Uncle Larry stayed at our apartment to babysit me. Grandma Georgie always made sure Uncle Larry brought me something to eat. My favorite dish was her homemade lasagna.
Other memories of her were the times she'd fill up my kiddie pool (even when Grandpa Dean would get mad) and play with me in the backyard while she gardened.
Oh, yes, the Shaklee meetings. Every week the Millers would have Shaklee meetings at their home. I'm pretty sure having a six year old running around was very obnoxious, but Grandma Georgie always encouraged me to run around, jump on the trampoline, and sing.
As time passed by , Grandma Georgie started to get sick. Although her memory worsened, she still remembered my name and my two baby brothers, Keith and Brian. When her condition really got bad , my mom always reminded us that even though she was sick, she was still Grandma Georgie.
My mom always would say that because of all Grandma's kindness to others during her life that she would go straight to heaven. Grandma Georgie was one of the most caring, giving, sharing and loving people that ever lived! She will never be forgotten. She will always be missed. There is no doubt in my mind that my mom was rightGrandma Georgie lives in Heaven now.
In loving memory,
We knew all of you so well when you were kids. Georgie was one of my favorite women! ( I was often the "meanie" to each of you.) I never met anyone who didn't love Georgie and appreciate her abilities! She truly was one of God's special people! It was our privilege and joy to be called her friends!
In the Philippines, I well remember several times when you all stayed with us, Velaine (our oldest), Diana, and Maureen ( our second). Now you are all grown up and truly very peaceful, most delightful, caring, and loving.
Once, Georgie and I were riding out to Camp John Hay to meet the gals for lunch. We talked about disciplining children. She told me that she had been taught as a child that if you ever smacked or spanked or touched a child in any way to discipline him/her, that it meant you did not love them. It was a precious time to share about children. She truly loved each of you so very much and never showed favoritism as far as I knew.
I loved her laugh! Her eyes would sparkle! She loved people! I never heard her say an unkind word about anyoneexcept a couple times when she was disturbed with her husband!!!!! Her home was always open to anyone and everyone. All were made welcome!
The last time I saw your dear mother was when Bill and I stopped at their home in Chicago some years back. When we arrived, we were greeted with hugs and big smiles from your dad and mom. I remarked, "Let's really enjoy each other because I'll never come back to Chicago again and we may never see each other again". This came true. That was the last we saw of your folks and we did enjoy our time with them. I expect to see your mother in heaven, however!
Georgie and I had some good sharing times and I hold those dear to me. She was a missionary all her life, not just in the P.I. Her joy of people was evident even when you talked on the phone to her. She made you feel good just by the sound of her voice! She shall be missed by her host of friends! Thanks so much for giving us the opportunity of sharing our love for Georgie!
Love to all
As you grieve her death
and celebrate her life, please know that I am among a circle of colleagues
and friends who uphold you in prayer.
Although words cannot begin
to ease the sorrow of your loss, please know that you are in the prayers
of so many who care.
(Georgie did mission work with them in Mexico in the 1980s.)
Our thoughts and prayers are with you in your loss of Georgina in the month of May. I recently visited the Illinois Great Rivers and Northern Illinois Conference and heard of your loss.
Georgie will ever be remembered
for warm friendly hugs with love emanating from her very being.
memory of Georgie,
I wanted to write something about your wife, mother, and my friend, Georgie Miller. What a wonderful woman and human being. I think of her often and, in fact, just about every time I see my son, Williambecause her hands helped to bring him into the world along with how many countless babies she brought into the world.
But that is not my first memories of Georgie. I remember the early Freeport years...Meeting your family was the best thing that happened to the Ping family...Your family was vivacious and fun and everyone was always smiling and laughing in your house. And the smells of cooking were wonderful. I was a young girl, about 13 I think, when I met you all. And after the first meeting, it was as if we had known each other all our lives. I think it was my second home.
Georgie, I think my first real contact with her was the day she pierced my earsnow, all the other kids getting their ears pierced would come out wearing a little stud or something like that. But Georgie said no you gotta wear the string, and so she put that in my ears and I had to wear itmaybe 2 or 3 weeks, and I am not sure to this day whybut I think it had to do with the piercing not being able to close foreverbecause mine never did. And I know she pieced all of the girls in my family. Anyway, every time I put in an earring I think about this.
she was always smiling and laughing like a little girl. I don't think
she lost that part of her childhood. She always had a hug and a kiss
for me. I spent alot of time around her, as I visited your home. She
was like a second mother to meand when I strayed from my family
at one point, I could see the worry in her eyes, as well.
My next memories of Georgie were of the baby shower she had for me at her home. I was so scared back then, but she did not judge me or turn me away and I was only 16 when I was pregnant. She still always had a hug for me. And one night, it was Wednesday in church, I went into labor, and she said it will be a while yet, but she was going to check on me the next day from her work. She worked as an industrial nurse, I believe, at the time.
Georgie, Sue, William & Peggy
But all the next day she called to check on me and came to see me after work, and I was scared and I was having my first born at home. It was a slow labor for me and Georgie was there with me, and she assisted doctor Rachey and nurse Peggy Mallott. But I will never forget in the first hours it was so hard for me and I was so tiredit was 2 AM Fridayand she got in front of me, and Peggy behind me, and they raised me up and Georgie held my hands and brought me forward with each contraction, until William finally came.
And afterwards, she wrapped me in swaddlingit felt like I was in a coccoon, but it was the most comfortable feeling, and I remember sleeping so well with this on. And the next morning she came back to check on me and I had my picture taken with her and the baby.
Once you meet Georgie you are full of her. Her kind spirit is so strong and she left me with a lot of hope for good things to happen.
Now I am 50 years old. I have been a nurse for 23 years. I think I was a bit influenced for that by Georgie. And each time was faced with the delivery of a baby, I thought about Georgie. And in fact, I had my second baby at home.
Georgie is always going to be with us. I know the last years were difficult for her and the family, but I know she was happy to be with all of you.
We were all like one big happy family for years. I would not trade that for anything. And all the that Georgie had or didI'm sure she passed on to her children.
You were all a part of Georgie. You all had her smile and her laughter and I know she passed on a lot more of herself into all of you.
So she is, and always will be, an active spirit in your family. You only need to look at each other to see this.
She was a great and wonderful woman. I was blessed to know her. I have never met anyone like her. She will never be forgotten in my family, as none of you will ever be forgotten by the Pings.
I loved Georgie Miller. She will be in my heart forever. I look forward to meeting her again one day.
Take care of yourselves. Take care of Dean, because I always remember them as Dean and Georgie (as one). What a lucky family you were to have her.
Things we remember about Georgie:
1) We first met her in Fairfield,
Iowa when we came to visit Lenora and Jay and family. She was a very
beautiful and soft-spoken lady.
We will miss her very much
and we think of you all the time. Hoping you and the family are alright.
Georgie was such a special
person. I can still see her warm smile and hear her laugh. I think I
told you that when we first talked again after all those years, that
I had Georgie's accent in mind when I tried out to sing the solo for
"I want to Live in America." A friend I sing with asked me
where I got the accent, because he thought it was right on. Pancho is
from Mexico City. I told him that I remembered my friend's mother's
voice and accent for inspiration.
As a nurse, Georgie was on
guard watching over things at the hospital for us. She stopped a person
from taking more blood from you, Diana, and they checked the orders
and had them mixed up. Mom & Dad told me that they didn't know about
Jan yet. As a nurse, Georgie picked up some
of the papers in the E.R. and found out that Jan and Linda had died.
I think that Mom felt better learning it from Georgie than from a stranger.
After she came to Bonfield,
Illinois, we became friends. We had a lot of fun together. We often
went shopping together. Our family had six kids while she had four,
and they all got along together.
We both cried when they left
Bonfield. But we always stayed good friends. She was always loving and
caring for other people. I am glad I got to meet her.
We all had good laughs together. And Luther sometimes did not know if she was laughing at me or with me!
Viola and Luther Foltz
After Georgie moved to Freeport I could not understand why she would get up at 5:30 when she did not have to get up until 8:00. Georgie said she had to finish the chores from the day before, and get things lined up for the current day. After all these years, I think I now understand.
In the summer of 1967, we visited the Miller family. During our visit we decided to have our ears peirced. With ice cubes, potatoes, and sterilized needles my sister Donna and I got our ears peirced. That summer day our father's comment to us was, "If the Good Lord wanted you to have two more holes in your head, you would have been born that way!"
I also remember Georgie's great Spanish rice.
I have so many wonderful
memories of Georgie. After all, she came to our wedding in West Virginia.
Such a beautiful wise soulfull of love and zest for living. She
is now free and in the light.
I know what it feels like to lose a mother. I imagine that it doesn't matter at what age one feels that loss; one always feels it strongly. You have my sympathy for the feelings of loss you must be experiencing.
I wanted to let you know
how well I remember your mom in Chenoa, Illinois. She was always welcoming.
She always made me feel not just comfortable , but welcomeas if
she always enjoyed seeing me. I know her feeling was sincere and that
is what made it so wonderful for me.
of Georgie Miller
Our frienship began in 1965 when Rev. Dean Miller and his family moved to Bonfield, Illinois, on July 13 to serve our churches at Bonfield and Grand Prairie for two years. Georgie and I became very close friends, and we had many good times together. Our first social time together was when we had a birthday party for our Judy's 19th birthday on July 18 at the South Wilmington Sportsmen Club. The Miller family came, we had a group of some 30 relatives. We enjoyed boat riding, water skiing and swimming. Everyone had a good time, and we became better acquainted.
At that time I was sewing a lot, and made many dresses, as we didn't wear many slacks then. I had made a red dress for Georgie. We both liked red. We even dressed alike.
Georgie was a good nurse. She worked at our local hospital, and she also took care of the sick in their homes. I did volunteer service at the same hospital.
I shall always remember the morning of March 17, 1966. Georgie and I were helping clean our church, when she asked me to go with her to Puerto Rico to see her mother and family. I was so thrilled and excited! Georgie and I flew to San Juan, Puerto Rico on June 2, 1966. I had a great time meeting all of Georgie's family, and her many friends. I wish I could have spoken Spanish, but we made out okeveryone was very friendly. We stayed nights with her former minister, Rev. and Mrs. Pedro Rosa and daughter, Sarai. Georgie's nephew drove us around visiting her family and sightseeing. We toured the Presbyterian Hospital & University where Georgie graduated in 1950. We even saw the clinic and shop where Dean had worked. Sarai and I flew to St. Thomas Island, spent the day touring the island and going to the beach, which was beautiful.
One evening Georgie and I went with the ministers wife, Miguelina, to the Women's Missionary Meeting at the church. No one was there to play the piano, so Georgie volunteered me to play which I did. Luckily, I knew all the songs, which they sang in Spanish. All went well, and I enjoyed the meeting and seeing all of Georgie's friends. After 20 days of touring and visiting, it was time to fly home. Dean and Frank were waiting for us in Chicago at the airport. What a wonderful trip we had together! I took all slide pictures. I wish I had pictures to send to you.
After getting back from the trip, I was busy making plans for Judy's wedding. Rev. Dean Miller married Judy Fecke and Lee Graf at Grand Prairie on August 29, 1966. It was a lovely wedding with 300 guests. Georgie helped me with the wedding and the reception.
Then the sad day came when the Miller family moved on June 28, 1967 to Freeport, Illinois, where they served at Trinity E.U.B. Church. I helped them pack to move. Dean and Larry left the day before to get the house ready in Freeport. Georgie said she would not leave unless I went with her. Early next morning I drove our car with some of the children with me. Viola Foltz followed me driving the Miller's car with Georgie. There were many tears shed when we said our goodbyes. Georgie was a very special friend, and we kept in touch.
Friendship is a golden
Your Dear Friend,
Georgie had a wonderful life!
She was an example of joy and warmth to all of us. We shall always remember
her that way. She never had any selfish attitudes toward anyone; she
shared all that she had, and that was a gift, a beautiful gift from
God. We pray for all of you, that our Lord will give you strength in
the midst of sorrow. "Though I walk through the valley of the shadow
of death, I will fear no evil, for thou art with me."
Georgie was such a loving
person. I felt her presence at the memorial service at the Montclair
Church in Chicago. You would have been so proud of your grandchildren
who spoke so much of their grandmother and how they loved her. My prayers
go out to you and all the family. I'll remember the great times we had
in Shaklee exchanging meetings and having fun. Dear friends will never
A strong and lingering memory of Georgie Miller is that of a very warm, loving, generous human being. I particularly remember how she greeted me the second time we met. I thought that I barely knew her then, but she greeted me with an enthusiastic embrace that somewhat startled and overwhelmed a person with a Pennsylvania German background definitely not used to such demonstrativeness. Her affectionate nature is one that I remember with gratitude.
The dominant memory of Georgie is closely relatedthat of a caring and compassionate nursea virtue that grew out of her loving and giving nature. I often observed how considerately she took care of the people who came to the Clinic in Lubuagan, Kalinga, in the Mountain Province of the Philippines. Georgie truly knew how to minister to the sick and was always available to help people in need. Further, she not only tended the sick who came to the Clinic, but hiked to near and far barrios to minister to those not able to make the trip. In a nutshell, Georgie was healer par excellence, one of those wonderful persons who really use their gifts for the welfare of others. All of us who knew Georgie realize how fortunate we are to have known and loved such a remarkable person.
With loving memory,
She was such a sweet, caring person. Lots of great memories.
Our love and prayers,
We will never forget Georgie.
She was one in a million! She always had a smile and a kind word for
anyone she met. We will miss her very much.
Dean and family of Georgie Miller,
Jewel and I appreciated your wife and mother so much. When we moved from Pennsylvania to Bonfield (IL), Dean and Georgie were so kind. We had a letter from Dean to welcome us even before we moved there.
We got involved with Shaklee products from Rueben and Viola Lehnus. Dean and Georgie were involved also and we attended several Shaklee meetings. Georgie was always so considerate and enthusiastic for Jesus and for Shaklee. We shall always be so greatful to the Lord for that because it has been a good thing for us.
More than anything though
was the love Georgie had for the Lord Jesus
We send our sincere love and sympathy to all of you and your children. May the Lord richly bless you.
Much love to each of you in a special way.
Love in Christ,
had a wonderful life! She was an example of joy and warmth to all of us.
We shall always remember her that way. She never had any selfish attitudes
toward anyone; she shared all that she had, and that was a gift, a beautiful
gift from God. We pray for all of you, that our Lord will give you strength
in the midst of sorrow.
"....though I walk through the valley of the
shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for thou
art with me....."
You are in our thoughts.
God gives us the strength in the hardest times. My sister is no longer
with us, but remember you still have an aunt that loves you deeply.
I'm sorry I couldn't be with you in person, but in my heart I keep you
forever. I'm happy I saw her alive and I enjoyed seeing how you guys
took care of my sister.
Georgie had been so vital,
so full of energy when we knew you in the 1960s! We recall visiting
you during our 1964 - 1965 Chicago study leave and your seeing us there.
Remember our Lubuagan, Philippines visit and your visit to see us in
San Fernando, P.I. We know you have had some difficult years, just as
we have had in our own way. Thank you for gracious care of Georgie.
May the peace of God be with you.
When we think of the Millers we have many fond memorieshaving known Dean (or about him) from brothers over at Clarksburg, Illinois, near where we used to pastor. We met Georgie at East Bay Camp where we all worked with Senior High & College campers on Lake Bloomington, Illinois.
What a joy and delight to get acquainted and work with Georgie. She was so full of life, vim, vigor, and energya great sense of humora beautiful soul.
When we moved to a new charge in Freeport, Illinois, it was Georgie and Dean who greeted us right away and made us feel at home. With such dear acquaintances and friends, neither time nor space permits me to list the many, many wonderful visits, great Puerto Rican dishes which we still enjoy from Georgie having shared her recipes, and our worshipping together Sunday after Sunday plus working together in an exciting coffee-house ministry with free health clinic and many other ministries coming from the 215 E. Stephenson St. facilities.
Our hearts go out to the
Millers, but rejoice with them that Georgie is out of pain and enjoying
her precious rewards in Heaven with her heavenly Father, God and Son
Where does one start to let
you know that my heart aches for you and your family. Georgie was such
a loving person. I felt her presence at the memorial service at the
Montclair Church in Chicago. You would have been so proud of your grandchildren
who spoke so much of their grandmother and how they loved her. My prayers
go out to you and all the family. I'll remember the great times we had
in Shaklee exchanging meetings and having fun. Dear friends will never
|Do you have photos of Georgie? Please send them in .jpg format to the email address of Larry or Jeannette, listed at right.||
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We are thankful for all of you in our lives. Please do communicate.
This page was created by and is hosted by Robert Bike. Georgie was like a second mom to me for many years. And Dean was a good man. Last updated Wednesday, March 13, 2013
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