Serving Whitman County since 1877

Shirley Miller

Aug. 2, 1939 - Dec. 4, 2023

Shirley Gay (Myrick) Miller was born to Don and Billie Myrick in Stanford, Montana on August 2, 1939. She passed away suddenly on December 4, 2023, with complications from recent heart issues.

Shirley was the third of five children born to the Myrick family. She was predeceased by her brother, William (he died before she was born), her mom and dad, and her sisters, Margaret Schlimmer and Carol Greenwalt. She is survived by her sister, Midge Warrington of Great Falls, her daughters, Tamara /Tammy (Ron) Miller of Sprague and Pamela/Pam Miller of Spokane Valley, their children and families Kimberly Smith (Devan Nelson) and her daughter Kaitlyn, Cheney, Jerrod (Melissa) Miller and their son Matthias, Sprague, Jeff Miller, South Korea and Amanda (Peter) Rasmussen and their children Lawrence and Genevieve, Vancouver, WA. Shirley is also survived by numerous nieces and nephews, Juli Weishaar, Debbie Schlimmer Schafer, Sara Bivens, Rob Mills, John Servoss, Mick Servoss, Terri West, and Scott Miller as well as many great nieces and nephews and so many of you that are family through your friendship. She was the most awesome sister, mom, grandma, and great-grandma who loved us with her whole heart.

Mom grew up a small-town girl graduating from Stanford High School in 1957. She came out west to Eastern Washington that summer to help her sister, Marg, with her new baby and with harvest. She worked in a couple of restaurants in Ephrata, saving up to be able to attend EWSC. She enrolled in January of 1959 and from there on, she was and will always be an Eastern Washingtonian.

Shirley met Charles Miller, in the Fall of 1959 and they were married in Stanford, Montana in January 1960. Tammy was born in 1961 and Pam completed the family in 1964. They lived in the McCroskey Place (now the BLM Fishtrap Miller Home). Mom loved living on the ranch and helping with the cattle and eventually the wheat harvest. Together with her brother-in-law and sister-in-law, Jim and Karen Miller, the two families – The Miller Brothers, were Washington State Cattlemen of the Year in 1966 – after battling a fierce winter, tough for calving that year.

Charles and Shirley divorced in 1983. Shirley lived in Sprague and was very involved in Eastern Star and Rainbow for Girls. She was Worthy Matron and Mother Advisor, respectively, many times. She also held the office of Grand Deputy Instructor in Eastern Star a couple of times. She was a 4H leader. She was a member of St. John's Lutheran Church and served as Council President and Sausage Feed Chairman as well as Sunday School and Bible School Teacher. She was active in a Bridge Club, SLEO, Chamber of Commerce, a Pinochle Club, and any other organization her family was involved in. She ran for Lincoln County Commissioner and served on the Lincoln County Fair Board. She was one of the people you could go to if you needed something. She loved her community and was rewarded with a Citizen of the Year award from the Sprague Chamber of Commerce in 1996. She spent a few years living in the Okanogan Valley, but returned to her home ranch in Sprague and spent the rest of her life there.

Shirley had an awesome sense of humor and we hope you will bring many of those stories to her service. Sprague Fire Department named her "Miss Fire Hose, 1969" after a terrible summer of fires and she would show up with the homemade fire truck. She named one of the pastures "The Sore Thumb" after some duck hunters built a not-so-concealed duck blind in a pond (it stuck out like a sore thumb!) by painting a sign for them at the entry. She was known for her quick wit and ability to put together that perfect "got ya" surprise.

Shirley's family would like to thank the staff at Cheney Assisted Living for their outstanding care and support over the past couple of years. Your care and attention to her needs gave her a renewed wellness in her final year. We cannot express how much that has meant to us.

In lieu of flowers, the family requests memorial donations be sent to Cheney Assisted Living, 2229 N 6th St., Cheney, WA 99004, St. John's Lutheran Church, PO Box 343, Sprague, WA 99032, or Sprague Chamber of Commerce, PO Box 17, Sprague, WA 99032.

Her funeral service will be at St. John's Lutheran Church, 218 W 3rd, Sprague WA at 11:00 AM on December 16, 2023, with Pastor Tricia Christman presiding. Burial will be at Macabee Cemetery, Macabee Rd, Sprague, WA prior to the service at 10:00 AM. There will be a potluck luncheon following the service at the Church with a meat and cheese tray provided.


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