Susan Alling Miller 1927-2013, a former resident of Weston, died suddenly but peacefully in her sleep on January 17. She was 85 and lived at 122 Palmers Hill Road, Stamford CT. Born Helen Susan Alling in Newark, New Jersey, on December 21, 1927, Susan was the oldest daughter of Dr. Frederic A. Alling and Helen Stearly. Her maternal grandfather was the Rt. Rev. Wilson Stearly, the fourth bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of Newark. In the 1930s, her family moved to Montclair, New Jersey, where Susan lived for most of her life. The family spent summers on Buzzards Bay, Mass. and in Quiogue, Long Island. Susan attended the Kimberley School (now part of Montclair Kimberley Academy), where she graduated in 1945. Pretty, vivacious, intelligent, outspoken, and with a ready laugh, she made many lifelong friends. She played the piano and sang, appearing once in a school production of Iolanthe that left her with an abiding fondness for Gilbert and Sullivan. At Vassar, she majored in political science and also sang with The Gold Dusters, graduating in 1949. Susan was a loyal member of her class and participated actively in her 60th reunion there. In 1950, Susan married Paul R. (Tony) Miller, Jr., also from Montclair, where they lived from 1952 to 1971. After getting her certificate at Montclair State, she worked briefly as a teacher, but although she stopped teaching to concentrate on raising four children, she never lost her interest in education. She was appointed to the Montclair Board of Education and served as its vice president during the tumultuous years of social change in the 1960s. Her passion for education and civil rights never left her. In 1971, after Susan and Tony moved to Weston, MA, she went back to school, earning her MA at Boston College in 1974. She then became a high school counselor, concentrating on college counseling, working at the Dana Hall School in Wellesley, MA and, later, Weston High School. In 1984, they moved back to New York City, where Susan worked in the admissions department at Columbia and at the United Nations International School. Even after her husband died in 1991, she continued to volunteer her talents, counseling students at Martin Luther King High School and individually in New York. Susan and Tony entertained often in Montclair and at their summer home in Amagansett, NY. Later in life, when she moved to the Edgehill retirement community in Stamford, she remained active, serving on the Residents Council and never losing her interest in current affairs and social justice. She was a member of St. Pauls Episcopal Church in Riverside. Susan loved life, family, and friends. Her lifelong love of music never diminished; she regularly attended the opera in New York City and classical music concerts there and in Greenwich. The night she died, she attended a New York Philharmonic concert with her dear friend, George Davis. Susan is survived by a brother, Fred, of Marblehead, MA, and a sister, Stearly, of Knoxville, IA; her youngest brother Wilson died in October. Also surviving are four children | Fred, of Port Washington, NY; Darcy, of Mount Vernon, NY; Daniel, of New York City; and Paul, of Takoma Park, MD | and five grandchildren. A memorial service will be held at 11 a.m. on Saturday, February 2, at St. Pauls Church, 200 Riverside Avenue, Riverside, CT. In lieu of flowers, the family would appreciate donations in her name to the Annual Fund for Scholarships at Vassar College, Box 725, 124 Raymond Avenue, Poughkeepsie, NY 12604, or to the Greenwich Chamber Players, P. O. Box 35, Greenwich, Connecticut 06836.
Published in The Weston Town Crier from Jan. 25 to Feb. 1, 2013.