Lonnie Gene Miller Sr.

Published 10:25 am Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Gene Miller, 93, of the Farmington community, died on Sunday afternoon, April 24, 2016 at the Kate B. Reynolds Hospice Home of Winston-Salem.

He was born on Oct. 10, 1922, the youngest child of Leonidas Lee and Elizabeth Davis Miller. He was devoted to God, his family, his farm and the USA. He graduated from Farmington School and Lees-McRae College. He served his country, enlisting in the U.S. Army February, 1943, and received an honorable discharge in September, 1945. He served in World War II in the European Theater with the 44th Infantry Division as a foot soldier and in the foxholes throughout Europe and Germany with the Rhineland/Central Europe Campaign. He was awarded the EAME Campaign Medal with 3 Bronze Stars, along with a marksmanship award (MM.30 Cal. Carbine M1). His job was manning a machine gun, and before the war was over, he was the lone machine gunner — meaning the last one left on the gun he started on. Throughout his service, he prayed daily to be allowed to return to his home and family. Before shipping overseas, he married Christina Marie Miller in December, 1943, and fondly referred to her as “his bride” throughout their 72 year marriage. After returning from WWII, he and Marie lived two years in California, where he worked in construction. Then he returned to Davie County and devoted his life to his family farm. He was a member of the Grange and an active life-long member with Wesley Chapel Methodist serving as a trustee and every committee formed in the church. He was recognized as Outstanding Leader in Farming, Farm Family of the Year, Community ASC committee many years and in 1976 he was awarded membership in the National Geographic Society for promoting research and exploration. All newcomers to the Pino community remember him as being their personal welcoming committee. He was a true good neighbor, always willing to give a helping hand, dispense good farming advice if needed, and share his Silver Queen corn. He continued driving his John Deere tractor, planting the farm corn crop through the 2014 corn season. He was Pino’s unauthorized “National Treasure.”

Survivors: his sons and their families, Lonnie Gene Jr. (Janice James), Michael Anthony (Nancy), and Patrick Carson (Kathy), all of Mocksville;  grandchildren, Kristin Hall (David), Carolina Beach, Karin Miller, Nashville, Tenn., Suzanne Lakey (Bryan), Advance, Matthew Miller (Laura), Winston Salem; 7 great-grandchildren; many nieces and nephews. He always had a beloved dog, and his dear Blue mourns his death, along with a sitter and friend, Karen Wall.

He is preceded in death by his wife, Christina Marie Miller, and all siblings: Eva Lee McMahan, John Miller, Vernon Miller, Margaret Conrad, Elizabeth Shore, and Luther, who died in infancy.

A celebration of life will be held on Sunday, May 1, at 1:30 p.m.

Memorials: Wesley Chapel UMC, Mocksville.