On September 20, 2020 our family and the community were handed a great loss. Our Dad, Donald R. Miller lost his battle with cancer. He was laid to rest with his loving wife Marleen on September 26 at Sunset Cemetery. After a valiant battle, he succumbed peacefully. Our Dad was an amazing man and touched many people in a special way. He found guidance in life through the Independent Order of Oddfellows Lodge and their motto of Friendship, Loyalty and Truth. Don became the Grand Warden of the Grand Junior Lodge of the State of California from 1959-1960. For those two years Don spent many hours traveling the State fulfilling his lodge obligations. Dad married our Mom, Marleen, in 1960 and they had three sons, Scott, Ross and Troy.

Our Dad and his brother Uncle Dick were hard working farm boys with dairy cows and raising potatoes for Frito Lay. In 1963 they added Miller Farms Nursery, Inc. Over the years they stopped raising potatoes and eventually closed the dairy to focus on their business. They developed it, growing it into the largest retail nursery, power equipment sales/service and landscape construction operation on the North Coast.

Over his many years, Dad accomplished too many things to list but here are a few he was most proud of. He served for 26 years on the school board for the Pacific Union School District. He was a past President of Baywood Golf and Country Club and served on the greens committee for too many years to count. Don and Marleen with Dick and Joan were honored twice as Grand Marshals for McKinleyville’s Pony Express Days. Don also was a founding member of Arcata High’s booster club, Tigers Inc.

Dad and Mom were always active and would take us kids and our cousins, Linda and Lori, water skiing and snow skiing. He taught many of our friends these things also. Dad’s passion for work was only set aside albeit for a short time to play a round of golf, do a little bird hunting, snow skiing or ocean fishing. Even then he would be improving his fishing boat, the Bend house even the Harper ranch. Everyone knew when they used one of these places after he was there more likely than not it had been Don Miller “accessorized.”

In closing, Don’s passion for life was instilled in everyone he met. If you knew Don or just met him for a moment, you either felt love, happiness or a bit wiser from the experience maybe even all three. His greatest love and impact were for his family. Scott and wife Meaghan, Ross and wife Kelly and Troy. He especially enjoyed his grandchildren, Jennelle Miller-Crnich, Logan, Greta and Hayden. Gavin and wife Kaitlyn, Lucas and Garrett and his great grandchildren Jayden, Jaxson, Gracelyn, Sadie, Ryleigh and Milania. He never missed a function or sporting event, if there was football in McKinleyville that conflicted with football and cheerleading in Redding, Dad and Mom worked it out and made sure their children and grandchildren felt love and we always appreciated their efforts. We would also like to mention Don’s friend Charlene Lundblade and her son’s Rick and Ron who also held a special place in Dad’s heart. We would like to give our many thanks to Dad’s caregivers Kyle, Reggie, Bernardino and Elija, you guys were amazing help with Dad.

Don was preceded in death by his father, Herb; mother, Evelyn; wife, Marleen; and brother, Dick. The family will hold a celebration of life when it is appropriate to do so.


The obituary above was submitted on behalf of Don Miller’s loved ones. The Lost Coast Outpost runs obituaries of Humboldt County residents at no charge. See guidelines here.