Bud (Alfred) Miller

 

Bud (Alfred) Miller was born to Tom and Mary (Wiederholt) Miller on Feb. 27, 1927, in Conception Junction, Missouri, and was the sixth of 10 siblings: Leo Miller, Clara McQuinn, Mildred Miller, Robert Miller, MaDonna Fox, George Miller, Viola Williams, Bernice Vitorie and Mary Agnes (Mickey) Jarrell.

Bud’s young life was filled with hardship by today’s standards. His family was of meager means and he only went to school through the eighth grade. His family farmed a small piece of land that supported four other large families in addition to the Miller family. The son of one of these families, Gene Stoll, became one of Bud’s closest and longest friends and the two saw each other even into their later years.

Leaving Missouri with $20 in his pocket, and at the urging of his brother Robert, Bud and his friend Bill Brady rode the train to Montana in 1944. Bud settled in Lewistown where he built his life from the ground up. He married Helen van der Hagen on April 20, 1950, and they raised their family as Bud worked on ranches and then rented several ranches around Lewistown. In 1964 he was able to purchase the ranch on Castle Butte. Bud also started and successfully ran his own construction business, Miller Construction. In 1984, Bud was elected as county commissioner for Fergus County where he served until 1996.

Bud worked in and enjoyed the outdoors: fishing, hunting, and spending time on Castle Creek spraying weeds and chopping brush. He liked jigsaw puzzles, had a sweet tooth for chocolate, and loved to read stories of Western history. Bud also got to tour Europe in 1999 with his cousin, Spud Miller, to search his family tree, visit the Vatican and see dozens of castles. He was disappointed that he saw no birds or wildlife there.

Bud passed away on July 28, 2017, in Lewistown. His memory is carried on by his five children and many grandchildren.

Bud is survived by his children Carla (Dick) Dennison, Richard Miller, Tom (Kim) Miller, Terry (Ellen) Miller and Douglas (Yvonne) Miller, all of Lewistown; his grandchildren Jada (Clint) Beggar of North Dakota, Kodi (Jody) Kingsbury of Bozeman, Tyler (Kami) Kingsbury of Bozeman, Kas Miller of Lewistown, Kylie Miller of Lewistown, Jessica (Osvaldo) Miller Vargas of Lewistown, Crystine (Canon) Miller of Helena, Whitney (Paul) Brady of Lewistown, Jared Miller of Bozeman, Jake Miller of Lewistown, Brandie Emerson of Billings and Shane (Krystal) Emerson of Hilo, Hawaii; ten great-grandchildren; and his partner Julie Logan.

A vigil will be held Thursday, Aug. 10 at 7 p.m. at St. Leo’s Catholic Church, with the funeral at 11 a.m. on Friday, Aug. 11, also at St. Leo’s. Memorials can be made in Bud’s name to the Central Montana Foundation, P. O. Box 334, Lewistown, MT 59457 either for the benefit of the Central Montana Fairgrounds or Hospice of CMMC.

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