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WYNTER L. "SONNY" MILLER Jr.

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WYNTER L. "SONNY" MILLER Jr. Obituary
WYNTER L. "SONNY" MILLER JR. For years, he looked at the obituaries "just to see if his name was there". On September 30, 2013 at the age of 81, Wynter L. "Sonny" Miller Jr delivered his last one-liner and died peacefully a few hours later at his home in McAllen. His wife of 60 years, his son and a few dear friends were at his side. Sonny is survived by his wife Peggy, a daughter, Diana Spalding and husband George, a son, Sterling Miller and wife Denise, a sister Shirley Hofland and husband Otto, 3 wonderful grandchildren, James Tanner, Meagan Miller and Trent Miller, many nieces, nephews and brothers/sisters-in-law, Yoichi Kato, an exchange student son from Tokyo, Japan and his rescue dog Shelby. He was preceded in death by his parents Wynter L. and Juanita Miller. Sonny hailed from Fort Smith, AR where he attended school through the 7th grade. His grandfather called him Sonny because of his happy disposition and the name stuck. During WWII, Grosse Point Park, MI became home. After the war, the family settled in Edinburg, TX where he graduated from Edinburg High School in 1950 and attended Pan American College. He was a Boy Scout, Equipment Manager for Football & Basketball, sang in a quartet and was a constant jokester. Sonny married his high school sweetheart, Peggy Jo Sterling in 1952 and moved to Louisiana. Job opportunities took the family to Brownsville, Pharr and back to Edinburg in 1967. Peggy and Sonny moved to McAllen in 1981. His love and respect for the military and law enforcement filled his daily life. At the age of 17, Sonny joined the National Guard and later the Army Reserve, retiring in 1990s with 45 years of service. In his early work life, Sonny was a surveyor and cartographer in the oil business, then a draftsman at Texas Highway Department and Moore Air Base. He later served as a Deputy for the Hidalgo County Sheriff's Department, where he developed a keen interest in crime scene investigation (CSI). Trained at the FBI Academy, he later became a forensic fingerprint expert and served for a number of years in CSI for the McAllen Police Department. A Mason, Sonny was a long time member of the Hidalgo Lodge No. 1036 in Edinburg. Although a bout with kidney disease at the age of 9 forever impacted his life, he never let it impede his zest for adventure. Scuba diving, martial arts, spelunking, mountain climbing, backpacking, handball, bicycling and staying fit played important parts in his life. As a 3rd degree black belt in Tae Kwon Do, Sonny taught Karate for many years at the McAllen Boys Club. An outdoor adventurer, Sonny climbed mountains in Mexico and backpacked in Colorado. He travelled over 300,000 miles on his motorcycle through 43 states. Above all, Sonny loved his family and followed every activity of his grandchildren. The family wishes to thank those many friends that have supported Sonny and Peggy with their love, time and efforts. Special thanks go to sisters Adela and Margarita Romero and brothers Lupe and Rolando Caseros for their incredible support. A memorial service will be held Friday, October 11 at 2:00 at the First United Methodist Church of McAllen. In lieu of flowers, donations are encouraged to the Veterans War Memorial of Texas, C/O COL Frank S. Plummer, 8609 N. Ware Road, McAllen, TX 78504 (www.mcallen.net/veterans); Palm Valley Animal Center, 2501 West Trenton Road, Edinburg Texas 78539 (www.pvaconline.com); Wounded Warrior Project (www.woundedwarriorproject.org). Kreidlerfuneralhome.com Sign the guest book at www.themonitor.com/obituaries
Published in The Monitor on Oct. 8, 2013
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