Miller, Chester Robert
Chester "Chet" Miller, a longtime resident of Wallingford, CT, passed away in the early morning hours of February 10, 2021, after a short but courageous battle with cancer. He was a dedicated and loving husband, father, grandfather, and philanthropist. He was 84. During his final days, he was surrounded by his wife, two daughters, and son (via FaceTime) who will continue to honor his legacy.
Chet was born in Milton, MA on July 2, 1936, to Chester Irving Miller and Thelma Ellen (Sawyer) Miller. He is survived by his loving wife of 58 years, Grace (Karolshak) Miller; three children, David Miller of Hamden, CT, Dr. Karin Miller of Kissimmee, FL, and Paula Miller of Naples, ME; son-in-Law Edward Miller of Naples, ME; brother, James Miller of Lady Lake, FL; and grandchildren, Konnor Kruse, Sarah Miller, Emily Alcantara, and Abby Miller.
Chet attended Northeastern University in Boston and majored in Business Administration from 1954 to 1955. In September of 1955, he enlisted in the US Navy and served aboard the USS Paul Revere (APA-248). He then served in the US Navy Reserves until September of 1961. He was President of Herlin Press, Inc. in West Haven, Production Manager of Record Products of America in Hamden, and, for 17 years, served as Registrar of Voters in Wallingford. He retired in September of 2020 and moved with Grace to Kissimmee, FL, to enjoy time with their daughter, Karin.
Chet was an accomplished philanthropist, traveler, golfer, bird watcher, stamp and coin collector. He was known and recognized for his community service, volunteerism, normative ethics, and modesty. He rarely spoke of his accomplishments, which included serving on the boards of directors of many organizations such as the New Haven Area Regional Workforce Development, West Haven Economic Development Corp, South Central CT American Red Cross, Graphic Arts Technical Foundation (GATF), National Association of Printing Leadership (NAPL), Printing Industries of America (PIA), Ashlar Village, and Literacy Volunteers of America in Greater New Haven, where he also served as its president and volunteer reading tutor in the Wallingford elementary schools.
In Wallingford, Chet was elected three times to the Board of Education, was a member of the Wallingford Historical Society, Wallingford Country Club, Republican Town Committee (RTC), and was a Constable. He was president and state district representative for the Wallingford Exchange Club, and Chaplain and Poppy Drive Leader in the American Legion Post 187. He also established a program to formally recognize students entering the military upon graduation and a town-wide book donation program.
Chet was a Justice of the Peace, Master Mason in Freemason Compass Lodge No. 9 and Ashlar No. 332. He was an active member in Hartford Chapter No. 56 of the National Sojourners. He also served as chairman of the Walter Camp Foundation Charity Golf Committee, and traveled to Walter Reed Hospital in Bethesda, Maryland to honor veterans.
Chet was honored with countless Outstanding Service Awards from organizations such as the Project Graduation Committee of West Haven High School's PTSA, and the Wallingford Veteran's Memorial Committee. Chet also enjoyed his participation in the Wallingford Community Theater production of Don't Drink the Water (Walter Hollander) and leading roles in other shows such as The Odd Couple and 12 Angry Men.
A celebration of Chet's life will be held in Wallingford, CT, when COVID-19 restrictions allow. To request an invitation please call or text (203) 530-9964, send an email to email@example.com, or send a note to Paula Miller, 39 Walter Hill Road, Naples, ME 04055.
Chet's love of life and dedication to community service will not come to an end with his death. He was planning to help at least one school in Africa. In 2018, he and his two daughters were fortunate to have visited there. They fell in love with the people and saw great need. So, to honor him, a GoFundMe page was created to raise $7500 for a well installation, books, school supplies, malaria prevention, and sanitation. In lieu of flowers, The Chet Miller African School Fund GoFundMe page can be found at https://gofund.me/8d7dc0f4
Those who prefer to donate by check: The Chet Miller African School Fund, c/o Paula Miller, 39 Walter Hill Road, Naples, ME 04055.
Alternatively, Chet would hope that you will perform unexpected and unsolicited acts of kindness and contribute to an important cause of your choice.