Howard L. Miller, 88, of Tallahassee, Florida, went to be with the Lord on February 3, 2020. Born on December 4, 1931 in Detroit, Michigan, he was the son of Helen (Renner) and Leon Miller. Howard grew up in Farwell, Michigan. His family moved to St. Petersburg, Florida his senior year of high school. Although it was hard leaving the home he loved, God blessed him with a memorable senior year at St. Petersburg High School. Howard received the baseball award that year and his basketball team nearly won the state championship. He went on to play Minor League Baseball in Palatka, Florida and Sanford, Florida and played for the Clearwater Bombers softball team. In 1950, he was invited to try out for the Major League Baseball team, the St. Louis Cardinals. Howard was drafted into the Army in 1952 and served in the Korean War. Upon returning home, he obtained degrees from St. Petersburg Junior College and the University of Florida. He later received his teaching certificate from the University of Tampa. Howard married Kay Carol Grider in 1975. He lovingly cared for her and her children, David, Caryn, and Tim. Howard and Kay had a daughter, Joy, in 1976. He and his family relocated to Tallahassee in 1978 where Howard continued his work with the Florida Parole Commission. He retired after 36 years of service. He was an active member of Killearn United Methodist Church in Tallahassee, Florida. While serving at KUMC, Howard was a faithful member of the choir for many years, participated in Bible studies, delivered meals for the Food Bank, and drove the hayrides every year for the Living Christmas Story. He found such joy working in his yard and took pride in becoming a ‘Master Gardener’. He and his daughter Joy loved spending time together, traveling to see friends and family in Virginia and Michigan, and attending FSU sporting events. Although he was a graduate of the University of Florida, Howard became an avid Seminole fan during his 40 years living in Tallahassee. He was a longtime member of the Northside Kiwanis Club. Howard was also a member of the Tallahassee Quarterback Club and the Republican Club. He made a tremendous impact on so many lives. We will always remember his genuine faith in God, deep love for his family, sense of humor, sweet spirit, loyalty to others, and steady strength. He was dearly loved and admired by those who knew him.
Howard is preceded in death by his wife of 40 years, Kay Miller; father, Leon Miller; mother, Helen (Renner) Schofield; son, David Grider; daughter, Caryn Grider; grandson, Zachary Humelsine; sister, Ruth Reiss; and two brothers, Paul Miller and Robert (Bobby) Miller.
He is survived by his daughter, Joy Miller of Tallahassee, FL; son, Timothy Grider (Marcia) of Wewahitchka, FL; grandson, Emrys (Rafi) Grider; brother, Herbert Miller (Judy) of Farwell, MI; sister, Dorothy Dunkelberger of Angola, IN, as well as many other family members and friends who loved him and will miss him.
A celebration of life will be held at Killearn United Methodist Church on Friday, February 21, 2020 at 4:00 p.m.with a reception to follow in the KUMC Asbury building. In lieu of flowers, the family has requested donations be made in Howard’s memory to Killearn United Methodist Church, 2800 Shamrock South, Tallahassee, FL, 32309.