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Betty Jane Lamb Miller


Betty Jane Lamb Miller, 92, died peacefully Thursday, April 20, 2017, from complications of a stroke in her assisted-living home in Portland, Oregon, surrounded by family. She was born October 21, 1924, in Pasco, Washington, to Cora and Frank Lamb, the youngest of seven children.

Betty spent her early years living on a wheat ranch near Mesa, Washington.  She attended 11 years of school in neighboring Connell, but moved to live with her sister, Jo, in Grand Coulee, Washington, area where she graduated from Nespelem High School.

After graduation, she soon met Bill Miller. Following a two-week courtship, they eloped to Coeur d'Alene, Idaho, where they married on February 27, 1942. They often joked, "Since we've been married, we've only had one fight, and it started the day we were married." Contrary to their joking, they had a very good marriage that lasted 65 years!

Married life began in Coulee Dam where their son, Jack, and daughter, Jo, were born. She loved family, attending all their activities, from concerts to sporting events. She was a proud grandmother of nine, great-grandmother of 16 and has five great-great-grandchildren!

In the mid-sixties, she went to work for the Bureau of Indian Affairs as a bookkeeper.  She loved the work and made many new friends. In 1975, with Bill's retirement, they began their snowbird travels to Arizona and other points south. They enjoyed 17 winters at the retirement community, Caliente de Sol, near Phoenix, Arizona. They also drove 11 round trips north on the Alaska Highway to visit their daughter, Jo, and her family in Fairbanks.

She spent the last two years at the Springs at Clackamas Woods in Portland near her grandson Corey's loving family. She had many visits from family and friends. Her new family, the staff and residents at the Springs, all admired her friendly smile, quick wit, and stylish dress.

Betty was preceded in death by her husband, Bill Miller; son, Jack Miller; and two beloved grandchildren: Kent Miller and Jackie Miller Gallaher. She is survived by her son's widow, Sophia Timentwa Miller of Omak, Washington; and her daughter, Jo Miller Swarner (Don) of Fairbanks; grandchildren: Brett, Adrienne, Geoff and Cody; Swarner grandchildren Keith, Scott and Corey; Miller great-grandchildren Brandon and Triston Miller; Miranda and Brenden Miller; John Gallaher and Jarae Gallaher Cate; Jack, Dylan, Madeline and Jace Miller; and Swarner great-grandchildren Sheryl and Michael Swarner; Devon Swarner; and Braxton, Clayton, Weston Swarner; and five great-great-grandchildren. Also are dear friends, John Francis at Seaton's Grove, Pat and Jack Barnard, Elmer Rinard, Charlie Long and Pat Holbert, who were her "dinner table family" at the Grand Coulee Senior Center, along with Felix Marcolin and many, many other friends at the Senior Center.

Her cremains will be buried next to her husband, Bill Miller, at Spring Canyon Cemetery near Grand Coulee. In lieu of flowers, contributions can be made to the Grand Coulee Senior Center. A celebration of her life will be held later this summer.

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