Muriel Charlotte Miller

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Muriel Charlotte Miller March 25, 1913 – September 26, 2010 Muriel Charlotte Miller, 97, died Sunday, September 26, 2010 at Hospice and Palliative Care of Western Colorado. For the past year Muriel lived at Grand Villa Assisted Living. She was born to Daniel and Lillian (Wederquist) Knaus in Niwot, Colorado on March 25, 1913, the first of eight children. She grew up on the bustling family farm just outside of town. She was a bright student in school and was able to skip a grade. When it was time for her to go to high school, the family didn't have the means to transport her to the closest one in Longmont every day, so she lived in her aunt's boarding house in Boulder and attended high school there instead. She graduated in 1930, and at the age of 17 began her nurses training in Mercy Hospital in Denver, the only program that would accept such a young applicant at the time. She met Orville Elliott Miller on a blind date the summer she graduated from nurses training, and they were married September 30, 1934. As the family grew, Orville's career moved them from Denver to Pueblo, CO; Edgemont, SD; Boise, ID; Idaho Falls, ID; Pueblo, a second time; Uravan, CO; and finally to Grand Junction, CO. Muriel had lived in Grand Junction since 1965. She worked as a registered nurse in Pueblo, Uravan, and at St. Mary's Hospital in Grand Junction, retiring in 1978. She also worked as a Gray Lady and a Pink Lady at St. Mary's. She taught Sunday school for a time and was a den mother for her daughter and sons. Orville died just after the couple celebrated their 40th wedding anniversary in 1974. Muriel greatly valued her family and looked forward to letters and phone calls. In the 1960's she and her siblings began a round robin letter that continues to this day, and the descendants of Dan and Lillian Knaus hold a family reunion every three years. She was a strong, compassionate, and thoughtful person. She delighted in subtle humor, clear autumn days, and family gatherings. She was practical and frugal. Her parents instilled in her the importance of education, which she passed on to her own children. She liked to read, work crosswords and cryptograms, cross stitch, embroider, and crochet. She played cards and games with her friends and grandchildren. She often shared stories of life on the farm, of dancing to the big bands at Elitch Gardens in Denver, and the unexpected humor of Orville's brothers. She was a good-natured person with an infectious smile. She is survived by her children, Doug (Verla) Miller, Camarillo, CA; Deb (Bill) McLaughlin, Grand Junction, CO; Jeff (Judi) Miller, Durango, CO; Dan (Nancy) Miller, Grand Junction, CO; and Greg (Amy) Miller, Rancho Palos Verdes, CA; her sisters, Marian Berryman, Fort Collins, CO; Shirley Kenyon, Lombard, IL; Roberta (Robert) Olp, Downers Grove, IL; her brother, Richard (Gladys) Knaus, Longmont, CO, and her sister-in-law, Lucille Knaus, Brighton, CO. She is also survived by 12 grandchildren, 19 great grandchildren, four great great grandchildren, and many nieces and nephews. She was preceded in death by her husband, Orville; her brothers, Kenneth Knaus, Dallas Knaus, and Gordan Knaus, and a great grandchild, Brett Neeley. A memorial service will be held Thursday, September 30, 2010, at 10:00 a.m. at St. Matthew's Episcopal Church. Contributions may be made in her memory to the Hospice and Palliative Care Center of Western Colorado, 3090 North 12th Street, Unit B, Grand Junction, CO 81506.
Published in The Daily Sentinel on Sept. 29, 2010
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