Albertha B. Miller
Albertha Jewel Benz Miller, always lovingly known as “Tyke”, from De Kalb Junction, passed away at Canton-Potsdam Hospital on February 27th, 2017 with her loving family by her side at age 85. Tyke was born in Buffalo, NY on September 11th, 1931 to Joseph Francis Benz and Helen Winifred Felton Benz. She married John Marchel Miller, Jr. “Jack” on January 25, 1952 at Central Church of Christ, Disciple in Buffalo, N.Y.
Surviving are her son John Marchel Miller, III of De Kalb Jct., NY; daughters Holly Helen Miller of Rochester, NY and Lynn Jewel Miller of De Kalb Jct., NY; Also, granddaughter, Kelly Krista Maas (Scott) of Rochester, NY; grandson Paul “P.J.” Joseph Miller (Amanda) of Plattsburgh, NY; two great grandchildren Kaylee Amelia Maas and Logan Scott Maas, both of Rochester, NY; step great grandson Riley James Palmer of Plattsburgh, NY; niece Deborah Driscoll of Baltimore, MD; nephew Dennis (Julie) Oscar of West Bend, WI; nephew Douglas (Janene) Oscar of Kenmore, NY; niece Kimberly (Rich) Bradway of Stockbridge, MA; nephew Todd (Susan) Seeber of Wayland, MA; and brother- in-Law Keith Seeber of Fort Plain, NY. She was predeceased by her husband Jack after 63 years of a very loving and happy marriage. She was also predeceased by her sisters June Marie Oscar and Eunice Helen Elliston; sister-in-law Carolyn Miller Seeber; and nephew Kyle Seeber.
..Musically inclined in high school she was the Violin Concert Mistress in Buffalo and at Fosdick-Masten High School. Always committed to her faith, she served as a Sunday School teacher as a teenager and was the Buffalo City Fair Chair of the raffle for the Home Economics Booth quilt. Her first job was at Camp Twa-ne-ko-tah on Chautauqua Lake, NY during the summers in high school and college as the 2nd cook. There she was responsible for vegetables, desserts, and salads for 250 to 500 campers. She attended SUNY Buffalo and was an active member of their Home Economics Club and in the Student Christian Association, where she met Jack. For 10 years she was the Brownie and Junior Girl Scout leader in Huntington, NY. Tyke taught Girl Scout leaders camping and craft skills and also taught cake decorating to senior Girl Scouts. She served as a Deacon at the Old First Presbyterian Church of Huntington, Long Island and was a confirmation class Parent Advisor for three years. She was also a Parent Advisor for the 7th and 8th grades; “Niners” and Tuxis groups for the senior high school students. Tyke was also the Chairman of the Fall Church Bazar, and taught arts and crafts and Vacation Bible School in Levitown, NY and in Huntington, NY. Notably, among her many accolades she was the first woman to receive the Martha Washington medal from the Suffolk County Sons of the American Revolution (SAR) for helping with their Chapter fundraisers for 18 years.
Tyke and Jack have lived on the family farm “The House that Jack Built” in De Kalb Jct., NY for 38 years. With their son John III, they raised and sold pigs and goats for 25 years and have had large gardens, and ran the family business "Miller Family Colonial Museum". Tyke was a terrific cook, excelled in baking, making hundreds of cookies, fruit cake, and candies every Christmas, and loved to share her baked goods with many people including the “The American Shakespeare Center” for the last 20 years and the “Billy Martin’s Cole All Star Circus” for many years when they came to town. Tyke began sewing as a child and continued her love of sewing and hand crafts such as knitting, crocheting, and quilting for her whole life. She was a member of The Seaway Cruisers Classic Car Club and The Wolcott Family Society.
Tyke was a member of the First Presbyterian Church on The Park, Canton, NY for 38 years. She was a sitting Elder on their Session for 6 years, the Communion Chairperson for 14 years, as well as volunteering to coordinate their lobby bulletin board for 14 years. She introduced a special candle light Maundy Thursday service which continues to this day and received their Woman of the Year award in 2011. In addition to her work with the church, she was the President of the Presbyterian Women and a voting delegate to the national Presbyterian Woman in the 1980’s when Northern and Southern Presbyterians merged again. She also served as the Secretary of the Presbyterian Women of SYNOD of Northern NY.
The family will receive friends on Friday, March 3, 2017 from 4-7 PM at the Lawrence Funeral Home, 21 Park Street, Canton. Her funeral will be celebrated on Saturday, March 4, 2017 at 10:00 AM in the First Presbyterian Church of Canton with Michael P. Catanzaro officiating. Burial will follow in Evergreen Cemetery.
In lieu of flowers Tyke would ask that you please make a donation to one of her two favorite charities. The First Presbyterian Church on the Park, Canton, NY, 17 Park Street, Canton, NY 13617 or The Wolcott Family Society, c/o Cynthia Kirwan, 101 N. West St., Seymour, IL 61875-9791.
Condolences may be shared with the family by visiting www.lawrencefuneralhome.org