Dean Edward Miller 1933-2023

Dean Edward Miller, of Yuma, Colorado, passed away on April 4, 2023 at Yuma District Hospital. He suffered multiple cardiac events leading to a sudden decline in health.
Dean was born May 8, 1933 in Zenda, Kansas, to Walter Miller and Alice Trentman Miller. He was the third of seven children. The family had a small farm originally homesteaded by Dean’s grandfather, Edward Miller. Edward divided the property amongst his son and five daughters, so Dean’s neighborhood was filled with cousins who shared school and life. From an early age, Dean and his older brother Gerald managed the bulk of the farm work while their father worked at a gas station.
Dean met Peggy Babcock from Anthony, Kansas, at a dance before their senior year of high school. They dated that year and got engaged on the evening of their senior prom. Dean and Peggy married on July 12, 1952, in Anthony and had three children: Doug, Cathy, and Brian.
Dean forged a distinct and varied career portfolio. He built irrigation systems and grain bins, worked in oil fields and soil conservation (building terraces and waterways), constructed Alco stores, and dug missile silos. He also was an auto dealer, owning Ford, Chrysler, and Dodge dealerships. During his ownership of Dean Miller Ford, he erected the building that currently houses Korf Continental. There was also a time when he dabbled in ranching. He guilelessly bought cattle high and sold low, which was the abrupt end of his tenure as a rancher.
Dean and Peggy loved to travel and loved to entertain. They were known for their hospitable and sociable natures. They hosted many groups of friends and family who traveled with them or spent time in their homes. They held a three-day party in honor of their 40th wedding anniversary and then celebrated the same way for their 50th wedding anniversary.
Whether it was the annual fish fry, teaching visitors to play Mexican Dominoes or poker, spending days in his fishing boat in the waterways of south Texas, meticulously caring for tools, homes and yards, Dean worked hard and played hard. Dean never did anything half-heartedly. He worked, he played, and he loved with determination and passion.
Children were naturally drawn to Dean by virtue of his affectionate disposition. His grandchildren adored him so much that three of them named sons after him!
Dean is survived by his son Doug and his wife Terry of Rocky Ford, his daughter Cathy Asmus of Haxtun, as well as eight grandchildren; Jennifer Rutz of Bandon, OR, Chris Miller and his wife Coral of Castle Pines, CO, Marcie Monaco and her husband Joe of Lebanon, IL, Lindsay Dewey and her husband Dave of Brighton, CO, Jesse Faulkner and her husband Dan of Fredrick, CO, Alica Wario of Yuma, Jené Rutz and her husband Robert Martinez of Yuma, Jaime Ho and her husband Alan of Brighton, CO and 25 great-grandchildren. He is also survived by his sister Marilyn Bullard of Ringwood, Oklahoma, and many nieces and nephews.
He was preceded in death by his wife, Peggy; his son, Brian; his parents, Alice and Walter; Peggy’s parents Earl and Eva (Imel) Babcock; his brothers, Gale, Gerald, and Edward; and his sisters, Jo Ann MacArthur and Carol Haruf.
A celebration of a life well-lived will be held Saturday, May 6, 2023 at 11:00 at the First Presbyterian Church in Yuma, Colorado. Dean’s remains were cremated, and a private burial will be held at the Yuma Cemetery.
In lieu of flowers, memorial gifts are preferred. All memorial gifts will be donated to the City of Yuma Recreation Department.