MILLER, Douglas Coplen
Today, the Miller family mourns the passing of Douglas Coplen Miller. Doug passed away peacefully on November 4, 2013 in Carmichael, CA. after a courageous 5 year battle with colon cancer. Doug was age 65. He leaves behind him his loving and extraordinary mother, Marilyn Coplen Miller; his thoughtful, loving and supportive wife Jo Ann Fare Miller and his wonderful, adored daughter, Laura Marissa Miller, his sisters Carol Wiley (Bo) and Diane Jenkins; his nephews and niece, Chris St. Louis (Sandra), Michael De Chellis, Michelle and Stephen Willey; his great-nephew Robbie St. Louis; and his wonderful cousins Susan and Julie. Throughout his life, Doug enjoyed the constant pursuit of knowledge and was many things: artist, poet, teacher, historian, attorney, Director of Human Resources and a Labor Relations professional.
Doug was born in Sioux City, Iowa, to Robert and Marilyn Miller, on September 10, 1948. As his father pursued his business interests, the family relocated from Iowa to Wichita and Hutchinson, Kansas and in 1954 finally moved to Southern California. Doug and his family lived in Pacific Beach, Chula Vista, Ventura, and Costa Mesa before arriving in Sacramento in 1965. Throughout his formative years and young adulthood he was also greatly influenced by the love and guidance of his extraordinary grandparents, Henry and Laura Miller and Ted and Marguerite Coplen and the ocean. Doug attended Costa Mesa and Luther Burbank High schools before graduating from C.K. McClatchy in 1966. From there he went directly to U.C. Davis where he enjoyed the study of history, art and the natural sciences. After graduation in 1970 he obtained his teaching credential and taught high school at William Daylor High School in the Elk Grove Unified School District. While teaching full time he served as a faculty representative and collective bargaining negotiations team member, then was elected President of the Elk Grove Education Association. During this period he also returned to school. earned his Masters Degree and was accepted to study law at the University Of the Pacific McGeorge School of Law.
After graduation he continued his interest in labor law, first as a business agent then as a labor attorney primarily focusing on defensing disciplinary arbitrations involving police officers, deputy sheriffs, and city and county employees. After an offer to do labor relations work for management, he became the Director Of Human Resources for Crystal Cream and Butter Company. After leaving Crystal he opened his law office in Fair Oaks where he specialized in labor law, bankruptcies, immigration and personal injury. When an opportunity to pursue labor law again arose, he became the Senior Labor Analyst, then Director of Labor Relations for the Sacramento Regional Transit District (RT).
In his later years he particularly enjoyed his return to painting, sculpting and the creation of latex Halloween masks. He was an avid collector of antiques, coins, political buttons, historical newspapers and fossils. His devotion to his family and his country were well known. If there is one thing for which he will be remembered the most it would be his lively, quick wit and entertaining sense of humor which never seemed to be at rest. We will miss that and him so much.
A memorial service will be held on Saturday, November 16, 2013 at 2PM at NORTH SACRAMENTO FUNERAL HOME, 725 El Camino Ave., Sacramento, CA 95815.www.northsacfuneral.com Flowers are welcome.
Published in The Sacramento Bee on Nov. 10, 2013