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Ronnie J. Miller


Ronnie Lorraine Krieger Karsh Johnston Miller left us the way she lived, Her Way. Ageless at 95 years young--her unique mind, sharp, curious and concerned as ever--she listened to her body, and let it go. Until the end, she had a child-like wonder, always asking questions of others, out of genuine concern for their lives, wanting to know their story.

Ronnie's story, rather journey, began in Hammond Indiana, the daughter of grocers, the eldest of three children. She enjoyed being pampered by her doting, loving parents, innocently playing with paper dolls (into her teens!). She also developed a passion for dance. Talented enough to join a touring dance company, as a young teen she was often on the road, performing for soldiers during WWII. Following her passion, Ronnie took the giant step of moving to California to pursue her dream of a career in dance. Instead, she married a motor-cycle riding baker, settled down and had two children. After a dozen home-making years, she shocked the family by getting divorced, the first of three.

Ronnie stayed in California, but didn't stay single for long, soon falling for a carpenter, another Midwestern transplant. Remarrying, she had a second set of kids. She spent the next dozen years following this restless husband around Southern California, back to the Midwest and finally down to Southern Florida. Along the way, she developed a love for the game of tennis and found a career in Waitressing. A sunworshipper, she tooled around town in a bright yellow convertible.

Another divorce brought Ronnie back to California, where she continued working as a waitress. In the restaurant, she got close to her manager, a charming, former Marine pilot to Presidents Kennedy and Johnson. They had a spirited thirty-year marriage. Their favorite activity was watching professional football. Ronnie's team, until the end, was the San Francisco 49ers. It was the game of tennis, though, that may have brought her the greatest joy. She played on several competing teams, developing many close, life-long friendships.

Along the way, Ronnie developed a consistent exercise routine that included walking, riding her bike and going to the gym. She also traveled extensively, by car and by plane, to visit friends and family, especially her children and grandchildren (and recently, a beloved great-grandchild).

The last leg of her journey, a daring adventure for a soon to be single, soon to be 80-year-old woman, was her cross-country move to Fernandina Beach. Here, Ronnie blossomed, a newcomer who befriended many. Her calendar, for years, was full of daily activities: classes at the YMCA, going to plays (she even starred in one!), lunches and bridge and mahjong games with friends, volunteer work for Barnabas and the Hospital, dinners with family and a whole schedule of TV shows late into the evening. She rode her bike all over the Island, the beach being one of her favorite stops. Her bike basket overflowed with groceries from Publix and Winn Dixie, cute nicknacks from the stores on Centre Street downtown, and bright clothing from Talbots and Bealls. Into her 90s, Ronnie was still riding her bike to her volunteer job at Hospice. Her giant presence, her care, compassion, concern—her questions—will be missed.

A celebration of life will take place at in the Burgess Chapel of Oxley-Heard Funeral Directors Friday March 8, 2024 at
2:00 PM.

Please make any memorial donations to Council on Aging for the Ronnie Miller Memorial Membership


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