Freda J. (Herman) Miller, of Rochester, IL, formerly of Olney, IL, passed away on Wednesday, January 3, 2024.

Freda graduated from Olney High School in 1961. She was hired to work for the FBI in Washington DC for a number of years before transferring to Springfield Illinois to be closer to family. In 1967, she married Richard Miller and started a family, having a daughter, Christine, and son, James. She was adamant that the sun rose and set on her children and her family life came first above all else. She worked tirelessly at different jobs and participated in the unending remodeling and building of family homes. She retired from the Federal Aviation Administration in 1998.

She was always active in volunteer work with the Catholic Church among other charities. She also supported and participated in her husband’s union activities, often cooking full meals to bring out to the men standing around a burn barrel on the picket line. Her husband’s life as a union laborer set a tone for her family that she heartily believed in, that we are stronger together. She was an enthusiastic volunteer at St. John’s Breadline in Springfield.

Her hobbies were vast as she was always up for a challenge and the opportunity to make something beautiful. To know her was to be the receiver of handmade kitchen scrubbies, crocheted or quilted blankets, delicious baked goods, gorgeous watercolor paintings or something else created from her vast array of talents. She loved to admire and create beauty. Her garden grew vast amounts of produce and her neighbors and friends all benefited from the inevitable overflow of vegetables raised in the rich soil of Illinois that she dearly loved.

Freda is survived by her husband Richard Miller; her daughter, Christine (Peter) Markman; son, James (Becca) Miller; grandchildren, Emmanuel Markman, Andualem Markman, and Kelsey Brune; siblings, Ruth Rzeppa, Dolores Francis, and Frank Herman; a multitude of nieces and nephews and their families, many extended family members, and friends too numerous to count.

She was preceded in death by her parents, Otto and Elizabeth (Muhs) Herman; brothers, Bernard, Paul, and George; sisters, Lucille, Theresa, and Edna.

A memorial service will be held at Staab Funeral Home in Springfield, Illinois on January 19th from 4:00 to 7:00 pm. Funeral mass and burial will take place in her beloved Olney, Illinois on Saturday, January 20th at 11:00 am at St. Joseph Church with a get together at the home of Andrew Herman immediately following burial.

In lieu of flowers, donations to St. John’s Breadline in Springfield are appreciated. You could also write letters to loved ones or not so loved ones. Plant nasturtiums and zinnias and tomatoes and as they grow, think of her, and share them with your friends and neighbors. Every chance you get, be kind to others.

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