Dr. Kurt M. Miller DVM
Dr. Kurt M. Miller, DVM, age 56, of Wilmette, IL. Beloved husband of Julie Miller nee Bradbury. Loving father of Nolen (fiancé Sarah Severson) and Grace Miller. Devoted son of Howard and the late Marlo Miller nee Lange. Dear brother of Eric (Dana) Miller and Andrew (Cindy) Miller. Treasured son-in-law of Mary (the late John) Bradbury. Fond brother-in-law of Lisa (James) Schreiber and Cindy Miranda. Caring uncle of many nieces and nephews. Kurt spent the majority of his childhood in Kirkwood, MO after spending his early years in California, a place that was very special for him. It was the central coast of California that ignited many of his favorite passions; the chief one being fishing. Kurt could fish anywhere and he had a special appreciation for the Pacific Ocean. But there was not a lake, stream, river or pond that did not draw him in with some kind of a rod and reel or fly. Food and wine were two other passions. To say he loved to cook is a complete understatement. He mastered many cuisines and loved the creative aspect of cooking. No matter a simple dinner or extravagant meal for guests, Kurt never disappointed. And he always paired a great wine with a meal. Kurt was also an avid Blackhawks hockey fan and proud supporter of Paws Chicago. Kurt practiced on the North Shore for 26 years, opening the first Veterinary hospital in Winnetka in 2007. He attended Colorado College and graduated with a B.S. in Biology with an emphasis in primate studies. He was a proud member of Sigma Chi Fraternity while at CC and that affiliation blessed him with many lifetime brothers whom he truly loved. Upon graduation, Kurt was awarded a fellowship at the Liberian Institute of Biological Research, in Liberia West Africa where he assisted in the research of human river blindness and a chimpanzee care and release program. After Liberia, Kurt continued his research in River Blindness at the New York Blood Center, planning on attending med school. Ultimately he decided to follow his true passion; caring for animals. He then attended the University of Missouri School of Veterinary Medicine where he graduated Summa Cum laude, with the top student honor in small animal surgery, small animal radiology and small animal medicine. Dr. Miller is also a member of the phi zeta veterinary honor society. Kurt was fiercely devoted to his family. Always kind, loving and supportive, Kurt was an involved and dedicated father, husband and son. He loved sharing his passions with his children Nolen and Grace, along with Julie his beloved wife of 29 years. Kurt was generous to the core and a never failing anchor for those he loved. A Funeral Service will be held privately at Church of the Holy Comforter, 222 Kenilworth Avenue, Kenilworth, IL 60043. A public celebration of life will be held early this summer. Details forthcoming. Interment private. In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to: Chicago Blackhawks Foundation, 1901 W. Madison St., Chicago, IL? 60612 or PAWS Chicago, 1997 North Clybourn Ave., Chicago, IL 60614. Info: donnellanfuneral.com or (847) 675-1990.


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Published by Chicago Tribune on Apr. 4, 2021.
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20 Entries
We are so sorry to hear of Kurt´s passing. Although we are not residents of Illinois; we know of Kurt´s wonderful reputation. Julie, we wish you peace, comfort and the quick passing of time to get you to the place where the memories make you laugh and not cry. In sympathy, Robin and Tom Schreiber
Robin and Tom Schreiber
April 15, 2021
Dear Julie, we are so sorry for your family´s loss. Hope your hearts remember the happy times, and the hurt fades quickly. Life is fragile. Take care.
Bob and Crystal
April 15, 2021
To the family and staff who loved Kurt Miller I offer my deepest sympathy My husband bob and I attended their wedding many years ago. A beautiful family celebration.
Joan Volkert
April 15, 2021
I knew Dr. Kurt Miller for 19 years as he cared for three of my dogs in succession. He was always kind and took excellent care of my dogs. I will miss him.
Susan Griffin
April 14, 2021
Julie and family, I am so sorry to hear this. I heard nothing but amazing things about Kurt from my dog family friends. He sounded like a great guy. Just like you´d deserve!! You are all in my thoughts and prayers. Much love, Mary
Mary Uriell Mooney
April 14, 2021
I am shocked and so sad to hear of Dr. Millers passing. Julie, our prayers and deepest sympathy go out to you and your entire family. What an amazing man he was. He not only gave such amazing care to our dogs Wrigley and Addison but showed endless patience, compassion and kindness to me and every member of my family at every appointment, during every phone call - just every time, all the time. This is heartbreaking. Sending you all strength as you navigate this difficult journey. The Kiersey family
Karen Kiersey
Friend
April 8, 2021
I'm just in shock and so saddened to hear of Dr. Miller's passing. My heart goes out to the Miller family. Dr. Miller was an extraordinary vet who took incredible care of our lab, Bo. He was a treasure to our town and will be greatly missed.
Nancy Riddle
April 8, 2021
Sending deepest sympathy on the loss of your beloved husband, Kurt
Beverly & Marshall Fleischman
April 7, 2021
Our deepest sympathies. We will always think of Kurt and the great memories we shared up north. He will surely be missed. Sincerely, Eric & Izabel Hauser
Eric / Izabel Hauser
Friend
April 5, 2021
Kurt was an incredibly compassionate and conscientious man. He provided excellent comfort and care to all who knew him. Julie, we extend our deepest sympathies to you and your family. Nancy and Maurice
Nancy Gore Marcus/Maurice Marcus
April 5, 2021
Please accept our deepest condolences on your loss. Sending prayers for you and your family.
Inna Hannan
April 5, 2021
We are very sorry to hear of Kurt´s passing. He was always so friendly whenever I would see him when I was out walking any of our dogs. He was a very nice man and neighbor.
Denise and Sam Kirshenbaum
April 5, 2021
Our deepest condolences on your loss. Kurt was a wonderful person and will be missed by so many. May the wonderful memories of him help to ease the pain of your loss.
Tanya & Jeff Mayeri
April 5, 2021
Kurt had a gentle way about him that will be missed by all (especially our 4 legged friends). Wishing you peace and comfort.
Sharon and Dana Hayes
April 5, 2021
Prayers for you and your family. What a gift he was to you abs our community
Becky White
April 5, 2021
We are very sorry for your loss. Kurt was our vet at Green Bay. He was so kind to our dog when he was on chemo. He also helped our daughter when she rescued a blind boston terrier. He was a great kind person. Our thoughts and prayers are with your family
Holly and Jim Waters
April 4, 2021
Julie, I am so very sorry for you and your family´s loss. I only met Kurt once or twice but know he was a wonderful guy.
Michelle Jorgensen
April 4, 2021
We are so sorry for your family´s loss. He was a wonderful man and dear to our family. Kurt was our Finley´s doctor for his 10 years with us. Finley had been sick from age 2, and Kurt helped us to navigate his care at every step. But beyond care, there were special measures allowed from walking in to the office to pick up Finley and finding him asleep under Francee´s desk because he wasn´t comfortable in the back. There was a time where he allowed Finley to leave the emergency clinic even while very sick because Kurt knew his anxiety would be relieved if he was at home and he needed that to recover strength. I´m sure Julie remembers the crazy family that Kurt asked to meet at his house on a Saturday evening to pick up anti nausea medicine. We brought wine in exchange! We often talked about our shared love of cooking and sampling wine. We´re not the only family he touched and he will be missed. We hope Finley finds him in heaven. Kim and Doug Fear
Kim Fear
April 4, 2021
Kurt was a true and loyal friend for nearly 40 years. He left behind his two lovely adult children, his gracious wife Julie Bradbury Miller, and his thriving veterinary practice. My condolences go to his wonderful family and to all who were lucky enough to have Kurt as a part of their lives everyday. Kurt will be forever missed by all the people and animals who knew him, and indeed leaves an irreplaceable void in all of our lives that no one else can ever fill. In a word, Kurt was unique: he lived a big life, dared and accomplished great things and earned the loyalty, respect, friendship and admiration of thousands of people while maintaining his dignity, openness, authenticity and genuine friendliness to everyone he met. Kurt was a man of substance and gravitas, empathetic to his core, kind to the powerless, protective of the weak, implacably opposed to all forms of bullying and oppression, yet so aware of his own frailties and failings that his greatest laughs were at his own expense. And laugh he did: Kurt could usually be found in the center of a group of friends, all laughing so hard they could barely stand as tears streamed down their face. To meet Kurt was to love him, to know him was to be welcomed, to think of him was to feel joy. Determination, dedication, hard work, an incandescent intelligence, grace, kindness and a keen appreciation for both the laughable absurdity and solemn seriousness of life were hallmarks of Kurt´s life and personality from his earliest days. Despite being captain of his state championship hockey team in his Missouri high school, a life-long straight A student and having a preternatural connection with and affinity for animals, anyone who met Kurt knew him simply as a warm, kind and generous gentleman. Animals and children, both wild and tame, would gravitate to him. "It´s OK," he would tell embarrassed owners when their animals would accost him walking on the street, "I´m a vet." "But my dog HATES vets. Maybe I should bring him to you..." would often come the bewildered reply. Kurt was never in a hurry to prove how smart, funny and classy he was, he let us all figure that out on our own while he mostly listened. Kurt left Missouri in 1983 for Colorado College where he met the love of his life, Julie Bradbury, who became his wife and life partner. He also met some of his most treasured friends, relationships he maintained to his last day. While studying in Colorado, Kurt had enough grand adventures for a lifetime and availed himself of every chance he could find to ski, hike, camp or climb in the mountains and deserts of the state that became his second home. Kurt traveled widely and broadly, living in, among other places, California, New York, Asia and West Africa for his studies in animal health and behavior. He was a lead or sub on several published papers. After graduating Summa cum Laude from the University of Missouri´s School of Veterinary Medicine, Kurt settled in Wilmette, IL and eventually started his own veterinary practice . This was deliberate: while Kurt had seen the world and could have chosen to live anywhere and been welcomed as an asset to any community he lived, he loved the American Midwest, where the understated Midwestern values that formed him and characterized his life were always in evidence: love of family, kindness to all, commitment to work and fierce loyalty to friends and community. "Dr. Kurt Miller´s Winnetka Animal Hospital" quickly became a North Shore institution, the place where animals and the families who loved them could be cared for, treated and healed. "Dr. Kurt" was widely known for taking as much time as people needed to understand exactly what was wrong with their animal and how to cure them. Kurt took calls at all hours of the day and night and even called clients in the evening to check on the day´s surgical patients. Kurt often talked about the importance of a vet treating the entire family, since everyone had an individual relationship with their animal, so his practice was really as a "Family Veterinarian". When the pandemic struck, Kurt paid his entire staff their full salary, whether the office was open or not. He had dreams of his children eventually taking over his practice, a dream of continuity of relationships and excellence that typified who he was. Kurt was a modern Renaissance man, with broad and deep interests across nearly every field of human endeavor. Given a short explanation, whether it was astrophysics or family dynamics, Kurt developed an intimate understanding that only comes to people of extreme emotional and intellectual intelligence. An incredibly quick study, Kurt became an expert and connoisseur at everything that caught his attention whether it was fine art, television dramas, architecture, wood working, fine wine, the outdoors, politics, and on and on and on. He was someone countless friends, relatives and even strangers turned to for help, advice or just a patient soul to talk to. He had time for everyone. As insightful and prescient in music as he was in everything else, Kurt always seemed to know the best new bands and saw every major act that came through town. Kurt could have chosen any number of challenging and rewarding fields and been wildly successful in any of them but chose to excel in Veterinary medicine, arguably the most difficult medical practice of all. He was so dedicated to fly fishing that he introduced many friends to the sport and he was such an outstanding cook that he easily could have been a professional chef. While he had a busy and full life, Kurt was never happier than when he was enjoying a big meal he had prepared for family and friends, sharing a new culinary technique he had learned and introducing everyone to a wine he discovered. He was almost pastoral in his care and concern for friends, and always took over cooking duties at parties. He had a way of making everyone feel they were the center of his world. Kurt was an active beer league hockey player and was an avid golfer, among many other athletic pursuits. As a St. Louis native, Kurt remained a lifelong Cardinals and Blues fan, but living in Chicago during an unprecedented series of championship seasons meant he could not help but get swept up in the excitement of the Bulls and Blackhawks, and he even softened a bit on the previously hated Cubs. Even in his fandom, Kurt was generous and kind. When a friend´s team beat the Cards in the playoffs, Kurt was always the first one on the phone with congratulations, and with his observations of the strengths and weaknesses of the team and their prospects for a championship. Inevitably, his analysis was spot on. It is said that the "tincture of time" will slowly help us to come to terms with our loss and that eventually, in the fullness of time, we may remember the joy someone brought us before the tears of loss start to fall all over again. Kurt has been different. I cannot go more than a few seconds without remembering his laugh and the joy he brought to my life and that of so many others. As the years go by, I am sure the pain of his absence will only grow. So we mourn the loss of a great man, Kurt Miller: a devoted husband, a doting father, a loyal friend, a gifted healer, a tireless builder of community, a stalwart pillar of strength in times of need, a compassionate guide lighting our way. We will miss him, but we are far richer, and greatly privileged, for having had Kurt in our lives.
David Savard
April 4, 2021
What a beautiful message about Kurt. It truly captures his spirit and passion for his family, friends and animals. Our thoughts, prayers and love to Julie, Nolen, Grace and the entire family at this unimaginable and difficult time.
The Mabie Family
April 4, 2021