Alan Reid Miller
October 31, 1925 – November 13, 2018
ALAN REID MILLER 1925-2018
Peacefully, on November 13, 2018 at the age of 93, Alan Reid Miller passed away at Middlechurch Home of Winnipeg. He will be lovingly remembered by his children Cindy (Andy) Blicq, Todd Miller and Chris Miller; grandson Graham Blicq; nieces and nephews Brian (Jo-Ann) Tomchuk, Brent (Shirley) Tomchuk, Barbara (Darren) Borton, Adam Borton and Alexa Borton. He is predeceased by his parents Alex and Florence (nee Reid), wife Roberta (nee Clark), brother Colin, sister Leona Tomchuk and nephew Ian.
Al was born in Winnipeg on October 31, 1925. He grew up in Winnipeg’s West End where he attended Daniel McIntyre Collegiate. There, he excelled in football, track and field, basketball and swimming. Al spent his summers at Grand Beach and made money carrying baggage for people arriving on the train, before heading to the dance hall to dance and visit with friends. He remained close to those friends all his life.
He joined the Royal Canadian Navy and served in the Atlantic during World War II. After the war, he began his postsecondary education at Normal School to become a physical education teacher, receiving his Permanent First Class teacher’s certificate in 1954. He was teaching in Selkirk when he met Bobbie Clark, whom he would marry in 1956. Wanting to pursue a career in Recreation, he continued his postsecondary studies at the University of British Columbia and the University of Western Ontario. He took his first job in recreation in Ontario at Port Arthur and Red Rock. He lived in Red Rock where he managed the facility developed and developed programs for the recreation centre. While there, he and Bobbie were married and had their three children.
In 1962, Al accepted a job with the Manitoba government as the first Recreation Director of the newly established Fitness and Amateur Sport branch. Over the next two decades, he supported the development of recreation positions and programs in 40 communities across Manitoba and was a founding member of the Canada Games, the Manitoba Sports Federation, the Western Canada Games, and the Manitoba Games. Al was extremely proud, when in 1995, he was inducted into the Manitoba Sports Hall of Fame as an All Round Builder.
While working for the government, Al oversaw the operations of the Leadership Training Centre in Gimli. He joined the Gimli Yacht Club in 1969 and was Commodore from 1975-77. He served on the GYC Board for an additional 11 years and facilitated the club expansion with a shared use agreement with Gimli New Horizons in 1988. Al loved sailing and continued to sail well into his 80s. Al was also a lifetime member of the YMCA, where he spent lunch breaks playing basketball and visiting with friends before heading back to his office at the Legislative Building. Al retired as Deputy Minister Responsible for Sports and Recreation. During his career, he survived four changes in provincial government, five premiers, and 11 ministers.
After Al retired, he and Bobbie spent most of the year in Gimli at the cottage, which he had renovated himself. In the winter, they travelled to Cuba, Mexico and Hawaii. He also enjoyed going downhill skiing with his grandson. After Bobbie passed away in 2002, Al spent his time working around the cottage, taking time off to sail, play golf, ride his bike, and visit friends and family. He especially liked organizing games and activities for gatherings he hosted for friends from Daniel Mac and Red Rock. In the winter, he continued to stay active when he lived at Lions Place, River Ridge I and River Ridge II. Al was a lifelong athlete. He loved music and was an excellent dancer. For the last ten years, he endured the debilitating physical and mental decline caused by dementia with courage and humour.
Thanks to the staff of Middlechurch Home of Winnipeg, and Donna Banting for the love and care they gave Dad over the last year. A Celebration of Life will take place on Thursday, November 29 at 11:00 am at Thomson Funeral Home at 669 Broadway in Winnipeg. In lieu of flowers, please make a donation to the Alzheimer Society of Manitoba or the Manitoba Sports Hall of Fame.
- Cindy (Andy) Blicq, Todd Miller and Chris Miller, Children
- Graham Blicq, Grandson
- Brian (Jo-Ann) Tomchuk, Brent (Shirley) Tomchuk, Barbara (Darren) Borton, Adam Borton and Alexa Borton, Nieces and Nephews
- Alex and Florence (nee Reid) Miller, Parents
- Roberta (nee Clark) Miller, Wife
- Colin Miller, Brother
- Leona Tomchuk, Sister
- Ian ., Nephew
Alzheimer Society of Manitoba
120 Donald Street, Winnipeg, Manitoba R3C 4G2
Manitoba Sports Hall of Fame
145 Pacific Avenue, Winnipeg, Manitoba R3B 2Z6
- Celebration of Life Thursday, November 29, 2018
- Reception Thursday, November 29, 2018
Alan Reid Miller
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Don S. Stone
November 28, 2018
Please let me extend my most sincere condolences for the loss of your father, my dear friend and a mentor to so many who were lucky enough to have known Al. We have been friends 55 years and I consider him one of those special people who make your life more meaningful and he certainly had that influence on me. He will be forever missed and always on my mind and in my heart.
Rest peacefully my friend!
Margit MacCharles (nee Kunz)
November 27, 2018
To Mr. Miller's Family I wish to extend my most sincere and heartfelt sympathy. I was the Receptionist/Admin. Secretary when Mr. Miller was the Director of the Recreation Branch. It was the start of my career with the Province of Manitoba upon completion of school. Mr. Miller was a true professional, hard working, kind and caring. His work ethic was second to none. I could not have asked for better mentors in Mr. Miller and his Secretary Linda. Everything I learned at the Recreation Branch gave me the best possible knowledge that I took with me in all the years of my career and guided me every step of the way. Mr. Miller's leadership made our office a wonderful place to work in. We worked side by side in harmony and our social activities were always a joy to attend. I know the Recreation Branch was the envy of other Branch's because of him and the great respect everyone had for him. I am truly blessed and privileged to have had the honour to know and work with such a wonderful man. From the Heart, Margit MacCharles (nee Kunz)
November 26, 2018
I am so sorry for the loss of your father. I loved reading about him. His life sounded full of life and of great service to others.
November 25, 2018
….happy memories of Al and the Miller family during the provincial youth leadership training centre years in Gimli, and in later years during my early radio broadcasting career.....sincere condolences to the family......
Judy and Mike Brown
November 24, 2018
Dear Cindy, Chris, Tod, Andy and Graham,
Mike and I are very sorry for your loss, Al was such a vibrant member of the Gimli community. It was very interesting to read about all his accomplishments, many I had not heard before.
Love Judy and Mike
November 22, 2018
To Chris Miller and family ,
Sending our condolences to you and your family in your time of need
Corinne and Abe
Muriel and Jeff Smith
November 20, 2018
To Cindy and family,
Our condolences on the passing of your father. From what you have told us, I'll bet he will be with you on Mystique. May the many memories of your father bring joy to your heart.