• Terry Mae Miller

    Terry Mae Miller

    December 24, 2021   

    Terry Mae Miller, age 74, of Chittenango, NY, died Friday, December 24, 2021 after a 2.5-year battle with pancreatic cancer. Terry fought cancer like she approached every hurdle she encountered in life: with energy and spirit, and a wellspring of strength that inspired and awed us all.  Dan, her beloved husband of 38 years, was by her side with love and support throughout her illness. Terry is survived by her husband, Daniel E. Miller; her children, Joshua Santola (Kendall) and Jamie Macaluso (Adam); her grandchildren Emma and Abbey Santola, and Lucy Macaluso; her step grandchildren Lauren and Elena Pacheco; her nephew Todd McLane (Kristina) and niece Erin McLane Gwin (Jimmy).  She is predeceased by her sister, Sidnee McLane. Terry was born March 26, 1947 in Annapolis, Maryland, to Raymond and Evelyn Kotzin. A spirited and adventurous child, she charmed friends and family alike with her warm smile and adorable dimples. She spent a lot of her childhood with her cousins who were her best friends. Her cousins always thought Terry was the luckiest kid because her parents owned a small grocery store and had all the candy she could ever want. They would walk barefoot around the neighborhood in Annapolis, go to the movies in Bay Ridge, and hang out by the Naval Academy. Life wasn’t easy as her mother passed away just when Terry was entering her teen years. Nonetheless, her father’s love created a powerful bond that remained long after he passed. As a child, Terry was always the gutsy one and did not pay too much attention to parental rules. “No” was never a “no” to her. One time she picked up all her stuff and moved to her Aunt Gertie’s house. Another time, she dyed her hair bleach blonde without permission only to have her father march her right back to the beauty shop the same day to have it changed back.  One of our favorite memories however is the time Terry and a friend drove the family car into a neighbor’s front porch. The two immediately left the scene and hid in her bedroom. The pair was no more than 14 years old at the time.  What a chuckle we would have when Terry would bring these childhood stories and many more to life. Terry was a 1964 graduate of Annapolis High School and then studied at the University of Maryland and Waynesburg College. Just before finishing her degree, Terry moved to Syracuse, NY, to be closer to her sister. Terry ultimately graduated from CCBI of Syracuse and started her career at Gaylord Brothers in Liverpool, NY. Her career then took her to the Cazenovia Central School District where she served the next 20 years, retiring in 2005 as the secretary to the superintendent. During her working career, Terry insisted on enjoying life and started annual family vacations to Annapolis, Washington DC, Orlando, Fourth Lake in Inlet, Ocean City Maryland, Rehoboth Beach and other short trips in and around New York. Terry lived for her family. After retirement, Terry enjoyed her granddaughters to the fullest and loved being a part of their everyday lives. She would often babysit and take them on adventures, but always fit in teachable moments about life and being a good person. She had a special bond with each of her grandchildren as well as her great niece and great nephew. Adventuresome, Terry was a trip planner extraordinaire who loved to travel with her husband. The first overseas trip that started it all was the Algarve region of Portugal. This region spans from the border of Spain to the Atlantic Ocean and is also referred to as the end of the world. That’s when the travel bug hit full force and she never wanted to stop seeing the world with Dan. Shortly after came ocean cruises to all ocean-lined European countries, Alaska with the family, river boat cruises on the Rhone River in France, Danube River from Budapest to Passau Germany.  There were also trips to Australia, New Zealand, South America, Singapore and Bali.  A business trip for Dan even brought Terry along as a guest to Moscow and St. Petersburg, Russia, which included many sightseeing tours in both cities. There were many more places she dreamed of going, and in her final months and weeks she had envisioned a trip to Ireland and Scotland and even dreamt of sneaking one in to the Florida Keys with Dan. Terry also enjoyed reading, Syracuse Stage, Fokus concerts, Symphora, Broadway shows, cross country skiing, snowshoeing, kayaking, boating, hiking the many New York State parks. Some of her local activities included: hiking Green Lakes, Verona Beach and the Adirondacks’ many trails and mountains, tandem bicycling the Erie Canal and hosting wine and food events that resulted in many friendships from people around the US and the world. Those who knew Terry will remember her candor and sense of humor, her earnest and enormous love for her family, her generosity, her spark, her smile and her laughter. She will be greatly missed. Terry’s life will be celebrated with a private gathering. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to: Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center which gave Terry the gift of extra time for which her family is forever grateful. https://giving.mskcc.org/pancreatic-cancer A very special thanks to the team at Hematology-Oncology Associates of CNY (HOA).

                                                          G.F. ZIMMER F.H.

                                                   CHITTENANGO 315-345-2601

  • 3 comments

    Dan, Josh and Jamie, Our kids played together years ago when we were neighbors. Enjoyed Terri and her friendliness. My heart and prayers are with you. Anne & Steve Annicharico

    Reply

    Jamie and family, We're very saddened to hear of the loss of your mom. It sounds like she had a fiery spirit, was fun-loving, and was fiercely loyal to her loved ones. May you find comfort through prayer, fond memories, and through the support of family and friends. Please accept our deepest condolences. Love, Vicki and Bob

    Reply

    I was deeply shocked and saddened to learn of Terry's passing. Terry had been in my thoughts recently. She was a unique spirit. May a lifetime of beautiful memories sustain you and always keep her close to you. My thoughts and prayers are with you. With love.

    Reply