LIBERTY, Ky. – Gwen Elizabeth Miller is no longer bound by her earthly body of 93 years. As of Thursday, March 9th, 2023 she resides with God and in the hearts of all who love her.
Though a decades-long resident of Port Allegany, Pa., in 2014 she ventured to share life with family in Idaho and moved with them to Kentucky in 2018. She lived at home in Middleburg, Ky. until December, then was tenderly cared for by Liberty Care & Rehab and her family until the time of her death.
The daughter of Herman “Steve” and Lillian Rose Grove, she was born in Bradford, Pa. on July 8, 1929 and grew up there playing stick ball and kick-the-can on Bradford Avenue with her friends, one of which was her childhood sweetheart Gerald “Jerry” Miller, whom she wed on July 19, 1947.
They began their marriage in Bradford, relocating to Port Allegany around 1957 where they raised their six children and had enough love to graft two more into the family. Amidst the flurry of running a large household, Gwen as a young mother was totally “in,” teaching Sunday School, leading Girl Scouts, participating with community youth activities.
She then spread her wings and participated and served Women’s Presbytery (Lake Erie Presbytery President 1978), Church Women United, and Women’s Club. She was instrumental in coordinating start-up and ongoing leadership of “Meals on Wheels,” even into her 80s. She served Camp JJ with Jerry for many years. She even drove a mini school bus for a season. Gwen did all this while singing in the choir at the First United Presbyterian Church!
How in the world did she have time to chase a racing canoe (with Jerry in it) around the country and ride tandem with him coast to coast on their motorcycle, more than once? It’s simple… humble devotion, commitment, grace and love beyond measure! Oh, and the ability to multi-task!
Gwen is survived by her loving children, Kevin (Kathy) Hanley of Portville, N.Y., Kris deDiego of Phoenix, Ariz., Jan Treat of Angola, Ind., Susie (Glenn) Twigg of South Waverly, Pa., Hedy (Curtis) Hopewell of Middleburg, Ky., Holly (Gregg) Schena of Port Allegany, Pa.; 14 grandchildren, 20 great-grandchildren and one great-great-grandchild. Also, extended family Dave (Julie) Kio.
In addition to her parents, she is preceded in death by her husband of 56 years, Jerry Miller; two sons, Gregory Miller and Kim Miller; a daughter, Jill Kio, and brother, Merlyn “Murph” Grove.
Gwen loved to sing, walk, swim, read, bird-watch, and write rhyming poetry. This is what she had to say when her earthly body was letting her down, “The sunrays enter warming my bones, proving to me I’m not alone…God’s in the sun and everywhere, reminding me to meet Him there…No matter what this day may bring, songs of praises I will sing…When night time falls and I’m in prayer, I’ll thank my God for being there.”
There will be a Celebration Memorial Service at First United Presbyterian Church of Port Allegany on Saturday, May 6, 2023 at 11 a.m. with Garen Smith officiating. Join the family for a light lunch in the social rooms following service to reminisce and share your favorite “Gwen” remembrance.
In lieu of flowers memorials can be made to Clarion Foundation, Inc. for the Emily Schena Scholarship Endowment, 840 Wood Street, Clarion, PA 16214 or First United Presbyterian Church, 12 Church St, Port Allegany, PA 16743.
Cremation arrangements were entrusted to McKinney-Brown Funeral Home, Liberty, Ky.