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Jeanne A. Miller dies at age 83

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Jeanne A. Miller (83) born August 16, 1931 in St. Louis, Missouri, daughter of Harry B. and Marie (Carroll) Miller. Passed away Tuesday morning, October 21, after a short illness. Survived by siblings, Jacquelyn (Dale) Sterling, Harry B. “Mic” Miller (Konnie Kuiper), Carole (Timothy E.) McCarthy and adopted brother Jon (Joyce) Miller son of Jacquelyn Sterling and nieces and nephews: Robert (Tammie) Sufana, Michelle M. (James) Searer, Melissa (Mike) Johnson, Amanda Miller, Cynthia (Andrew) Herrold, Dale Sterling Jr., Colleen McCarthy, Timothy McCarthy, Brian and Katie Miller, Brooke and Blake Sterling, Katie and Kerry McCarthy, Michael Doyle, Michael III and Dominick Doyle, Guy (Hannah Storbeck) Trueblood II, and Julianna, Nicholas, Tyler, Brandon, and Alexx Sufana, Joseph, Emily and Lukas Searer, Whitney and Abigail Herrold, Sarah Smith, Teagan Freeman, Cayden Carter, and Jessica Slade: Dearest Friend and “Adopted” Daughter Sandra Haness, Friends: Helen Drew, and Catherine Crouse; beloved dogs: Murphy and Molly, her beloved cats Oliver, Butternut, and Ebony.

Jeanne was preceded in death by her parents Harry B. and Marie Miller of Michigan City, formerly of Liberty Township, Valparaiso, IN, and nephew Michael L. “Mickey” Miller of Westville.

Jeanne graduated in 1949 from Liberty Center High School, Valparaiso, Ind. She earned both her Master of Science and Bachelor of Science degrees from Indiana University in Elementary Education and completed all doctoral coursework for a Ph.D. in child psychology from Indiana University. In the summer of 1964 she completed additional studies in guidance and human development at Indiana University and worked on a research project commissioned by the U.S. Department of Education on the development and evaluation of a diagnostically based curriculum for pre-school psychosocially deprived children with education psychology professors Dr. Walter E. Hodges and Dr. Boyd R. McCandless. A lifelong learner Jeanne took a multitude of college courses in various areas of study at Valparaiso University, Ball State University, and Purdue University.

Long time education professional, Jeanne held many and varied positions first as a first grade teacher in Beverly Shores 1954, then moved into counseling serving as an elementary guidance counselor, the Director of Student Services which included counselors, school psychologists, and nurses in Michigan City School Corporation retiring in 1996 ending an 42 Year Career of Community Dedication. After she retired she continued her passion for teaching at Purdue University North Central and Ivy Tech Community College teaching Sociology and Psychology. Jeanne was a trained counselor who specialized in grief, domestic abuse, and sexual abuse.

Of her many professional accomplishments she piloted the first elementary education counseling program in the State of Indiana; and implemented IMPACT, a drug abuse training program in collaboration with Memorial Hospital. She also implemented two critical character development programs that are still in use today in Michigan City Area Schools, which include Search for Self and Others and DUSO (Development of Understanding of Self and Others). Jeanne also spearheaded the first Red Ribbon Campaign in Michigan City.

Jeanne also trained counselors in leading parenting groups utilizing the Active Parenting Guide by Michael Popkins. Jeanne's unconditional compassion and knowledge helped and touched countless families in the communities in this region.

In 2003 Jeanne was honored for her professional service and commitment by the Michigan City Area Schools and inducted into the Wall of Fame which honors school employees who have made outstanding contributions to the children of the Michigan City Area Schools. Jeanne was also active with the Swanson Center in Michigan City for much of her professional career. Jeanne was also among Who's Who Among American Professional Women.

Active in her community and various professional organizations, Jeanne was a member of the Indiana Teachers Association; Phi Delta Kappa; Delta Kappa Gamma, two honorary teachers’ organizations, and CARE.

Jeanne's activities extended abroad as well with Children’s International Summer Village (CISV) in 1963 she took a delegation of children, junior counselors and chaperones to Great Britain for Children s International Summer Village, Jeanne then served as Children's International Summer Village Vice President and was Camp Director in 1965 at La Lumiere Academy, LaPorte, Indiana, When children and delegations from 10 different countries came here to the United States to share their respective cultures. Jeanne was also active with the Swanson Center in Michigan City for much of her professional career.

Jeanne was Past Worthy Matron of Chapter #274 Order of the Eastern Star, Chesterton, Ind.; Past Honored Queen of Bethel #54, International Order of Jobs Daughter, Valparaiso, Ind.

A very dedicated and caring person, Jeanne immersed her passions in many hobbies and activities. She was a truly gifted communicator and had a passion for bringing people together to solve even the most complex challenges.

Jeanne had a great fondness for and dearly loved children; her students and her many nieces and nephews as well.

As an accomplished artist she excelled in photography, jewelry making, painting, and poetry. She was truly a cultural aficionado having a great appreciation for the arts and nature. Jeanne also loved travel and traveled abroad touring Europe and most enjoyed her travel’s to Ireland.

Jeanne was a member of St. Mary’s Catholic Church, Otis, Indiana.

At the request of family and in lieu of flowers contributions can be made to Visiting Nurses Association Hospice, 2404 Valparaiso Street, Valparaiso, Ind., Porter County Red Ribbon Campaign Committee For Drug Free Porter County, P.O. Box 1182, Valparaiso, Indiana, 46384, Or Lakeshore Paws, 405 Elm St., Valparaiso, 46383.

A funeral mass will be held at 11:00 a.m., Saturday, October 25, at St. Mary's Catholic Church in Otis. Rev. Jerry Schweitzer will officiate. Burial will be in Chesterton Cemetery. Visitation will be 2-8 p.m. On Friday at the Newhard Funeral Home, 58 W. Walnut St. in Westville and On Saturday at the Church from 10:00 a.m. until the time of the Mass.

 

Posted 10/24/2014