A celebration of life gathering will be held for Mary E. Miller, 100, of Lacona, Iowa on Friday, February 24, 2023, from 4:00 to 6:00 p.m. at the Pierschbacher Funeral Home in Lacona. Memorials may be made to the Lacona Fire Department.
Mary Elizabeth (Rodine) Miller was born on May 24, 1922, in Des Moines, Iowa to Elmer and Anna (Lindblad) Rodine. She attended school at the Croatian Center on Indianola Road in Des Moines, later attending Indianola High School where she graduated in May 1940. The graduation ceremony was actually held on Mary’s 18th birthday. As a teenager, Mary was a nanny in Des Moines.
Mary met Chuck “Chick” Miller in June 1940 on a blind date. The couple married when Chick was 24 and Mary was 18 on December 28, 1940. The couple was blessed with a daughter, Darlene. They lived in Indianola before moving to the farm where Chick grew up. They worked on the farm and raised chickens. Mary enjoyed doing the push mowing. She was also a damn good cook but wasn’t particularly fond of cooking leg of lamb. However, since Chick enjoyed it, she would make it once in a while just for him, along with asparagus. Gene spent a lot of time on the farm when he was growing up. He can remember her baking brownies or cookies for him without nuts of course.
Mary worked in the kitchen at the Southeast Warren school for 10 years. She also worked on the election board for 40 years and was very active in the Methodist Church. Mary also enjoyed reading, especially the newspaper, and gardening. She spent a lot of time making sequence linen calendars for her family and others to enjoy.
The family made several trips to California to see Mary’s brother-in-law. They also took many trips to bring new buses back from the Blue Bird plant for the school. One year, they went with another couple to Arkansas to get a couple buses.
In 1994, they moved from the farm into Lacona. They stayed there until their move to Des Moines in the fall of 2011. Chick passed away in the spring of 2012. Mary stayed in Des Moines until 2014 when she moved to Indianola.
Mary passed away on February 12, 2023. She was the oldest sibling in her family, but the last one to pass away. She was preceded in death by her husband, Chick Miller; daughter, Darlene Putz; son-in-law, Bernard Putz; brother, Carl Rodine; and sisters, Betty Longley and Roberta “Boots” Munch.
She is survived by her grandson, Gene (Tonja Jimenez) Putz along with other family and friends.