Obituary: Jane Catherine Miller

May 25, 1941 – Monday, March 18, 2024

Jane Catherine Miller, age 82 of Washington Island, passed away on Monday, March 18, 2024, at Aurora BayCare in Green Bay.

She was born on May 25, 1941, to the late Robert and Nina (Pitts) Cooper in Chicago. She is a 1951 graduate of Dundee High School in Dundee, Illinois. After high school, her parents sent her to Stevens Finishing School for Girls in St. Louis, Missouri. Jane was briefly married and had a son named Jeffery. As a single mother, she attended Lincoln College and worked as a ground hostess at Eastern Airlines until the airline strike. Due to the strike, she became a secretary for a brief time and decided to return to school to further her education. Jane attended and graduated from Northern Illinois University with her bachelor’s in education and physical education in 1969. While in college, Jane met her future husband David through her neighbors and friends. After a year and a half of dating, Jane was united in marriage to David F. Miller on June 21, 1969, at Trinity Lutheran Church on Washington Island.

The couple and their son Jeffery moved to Washington D.C., where she taught at two schools in Alexandria, VA. They moved to Oklahoma, where Jane and David welcomed their twins Melinda and Chris. Jane left the workforce to stay at home to care for the children while David was overseas with the United State Marine Corp. Even though she was a stay-at-home mom at this time, she created a program for learning disabled children and received a letter of accommodation from the Commander at Ft. Sill. They moved to Virginia Beach where they lived for eight years. During this time, she managed a sports store. In 1984 the family moved to Dundee, IL. She began to work for a florist she adored for five years. During this time, she became a survivor of breast cancer and contracted a chronic lung disease that affected her for the rest of her life. In 2001, Jane and David moved to Washington Island for retirement.

Throughout Jane’s life she enjoyed staying active. She was on the water ballet team for the Stevens Finishing School for Girls, she raised her children, and worked. Later in life she taught water aerobics and painted. Currently one of her watercolor paintings hangs on the walls of Nicolet Bank on the island. She was an avid reader and her favorite genre to read was murder mysteries. When her mobility became an issue, the library would select her a book for her to read, which was greatly appreciated. Jane also enjoyed her flower gardens, and when it got harder, she just planted smaller pots on the deck for her and everyone else to enjoy. Most importantly, Jane adored her family, especially her grandchildren; often bragging about them and their accomplishments to anyone and everyone she would talk to.

The Miller family would like to thank Aurora BayCare ICU and the extended second floor staff for their outstanding care and concern for Jane and her family. They would also like to thank the staff at the Washington Island Library staff. And finally, the Miller family would like to thank the EMT team on Washington Island for their compassion and care.

Jane is survived by her husband of 54 years, David; children, Melinda (Lance) Campbell, Chris Miller and his significant other, Karen Cranford; grandchildren, Quinn, Liam, Hayden, and Bryce Campbell; sister, Mary (Roger) Braasch; and nephews, Robert Cooper III and Chris Cooper. She is further survived by other relatives and friends.

She was preceded in death by her son, Jeffery Miller, her parents, and brother, Robert (Jill) Cooper.

Services are being planned for Jane in the summer on Washington Island.

In lieu of flowers, donations can be made in Jane’s name to the Door County Emergency Services – Washington Island Branch, the Washington Island Recreation Center, the Door County Library – Washington Island Library Branch, and the Washington Island Art and Nature Center, each of these have had a special place in her heart over the years.

Expressions of sympathy and memories of Jane may be shared with her family through her tribute page at