Mattie Lee Burns Miller, 92, passed away on Monday, March 16, with her husband by her side, at her home of 55 years in Burlington. Mattie was born in Chatham County, NC to the late Arlena Turrentine Burns and William David Burns. She is preceded in death by her sister and three brothers; Lemuel Burns, Mary Elizabeth Burns, William D. (Billy) Burns, and Edwin Burns. Also deceased are nephews, Dr. Ed Dannelly, Robert Burns, and Barry Burns. She began pursuing her nursing degree at age 16 at Women’s College (Greensboro College) and continued her education at Presbyterian School of Nursing and UNC-Chapel Hill. Early in her career she worked at the VA Hospital in Fayetteville, NC. While raising her family she continued work in various healthcare capacities. She returned to school in her 50s for an advanced degree from UNC-Greensboro and enjoyed teaching nursing at Alamance Community College until her retirement.
Mattie married the love of her life, Jack Lawrence Miller, in 1955 and together they shared a remarkably beautiful life. Mattie enjoyed a great book, loved gathering around a table for a good hand of bridge (which she managed to enjoy and excel even after losing her vision), and baked the best chocolate chess pie in the world. She loved flowers, birds and butterflies and the beauty of the world. She was always informed and stayed current and interested in the world and others. Mattie was generous with her time and resources and served in numerous “official” volunteer roles. She saw needs that others missed and worked behind the scenes to improve the lives of others. She made an immeasurable impact on her family, friends and community.
In addition to her husband of the home, survivors include daughter, Alice Blalock and husband Flay of Greensboro, son Jack L. Miller Jr and partner Sandy Thomson of Gainesville, Georgia, son William D. (Bill) Miller of Raleigh, and former daughter-in-law, Catherine Miller of Atlanta, GA. She loved her three grandchildren, Jacquelyn Yanik and husband Luke, Elizabeth Miller and Jennifer Miller. She is also survived by numerous nieces and nephews and a host of dear friends.
The family wish to give a special thanks to her nephews William (Bill) Dannelly of Raleigh and Barry Burns (deceased) of Pittsboro who provided tremendous support for the last few years of her life. Also, the family is grateful for the care and love extended by caregivers, Carolyn Guye, Tamia Scott, that enabled Mattie to live her last years under the shelter of her home. Hospice of Alamance and Shelia Worth and her team of caregivers were invaluable in ensuring Mattie received the best of care.
Due to considerations concerning the coronavirus, a Celebration of Life will be held at a later date.
In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to Peacehaven Community Farm, 1458 Hwy 61, Whitsett, NC 27377 (www.peacehavenfarm.org) or the charity of your choice.
Rich and Thompson is serving the family and online condolences may be made at www.richandthompson.com.
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