Daniel Miller

May 22, 1945 – Feb. 17, 2024


Daniel Miller was born on May 22, 1945 in Moline, Illinois to Elsie and Vernon Miller. He passed away at home surrounded by his family on Feb. 17 after a nearly 25-year battle with cancer. 

Growing up in then-vibrant Quad Cities, Dan loved spending time with his older brother Larry and his two older sisters Julie and Marilyn. He had a profound respect for his stepfather Bob Cheney and always thought of him as his father. Dan was a proud graduate of Alleman High School in Rock Island, Illinois and enjoyed spending time with his friends and working on his TR3. He spent many hours working in the local foundry and there committed himself to furthering his education.

After high school, Dan moved to Orange County, California to live with his older sister Julie and attend college. He was actively involved with campus life at Long Beach State University and there met the love of his life Francee Ottem. He graduated with a degree in industrial arts in 1969 and began his career as a woodshop teacher that fall at La Cañada High School. He and Francee were married that winter.

Dan worked at La Cañada High for over 20 years and loved mentoring young people as a teacher, coach and advisor. He was especially proud of the enduring relationships he forged with many students that lasted the rest of his life. The second half of his career was spent working for the Los Angeles County Office of Education, first as an administrator for the ROP program and later as the first executive director of the GAIN Welfare to Work program. Dan truly believed in the transformative power of honest work and was a passionate advocate for those in need. He retired in 2006 and was blessed to maintain many friendships from his time at LCHS and LACOE.

Free of work obligations, Dan filled his retirement with a variety of new hobbies. He was an eager member of the Pasadena Pacers Running Club, even completing a few marathons. Dan enjoyed restoring a sailboat and building arts and crafts around the house. He also developed a love for quilting and spent many hours making quilts for family and friends.

The most important thing in Dan’s life was his family. He and Francee were married for 54 years and blessed with two sons, Michael and Robert. Dan loved nothing more than being papa to his seven grandchildren and three great-grandsons. They will always remember the way he made each of them feel special whenever they interacted. Papa had a love for life and for them that was unparalleled. 

Survived by his loving wife Francee and their sons Michael (Katherine) and Robert (Jenna); grandchildren Aubrey (Elan), Kayla, Lindsay (Jeremy), Emily, Christopher, Bobby and Brenna; great grandsons Ikaika, Kekoa and Makai; siblings Marilyn (Keith) Rodgers.

He was receded in death by his parents Bob and Elsie and siblings Larry and Julie. 

A Mass of Christian burial will be held at Holy Redeemer Church, 2411 Montrose Ave. in Montrose on Saturday March 16 at 11 a.m. followed by a reception at the Knights of Columbus Hall at 2657 Honolulu Ave. in Montrose.