William Winston Miller, age 77, of Basin, Wyoming, passed away peacefully on Sunday, February 24, 2019 surrounded by his family.
Winston was born April 5, 1941, in Anamosa, Iowa, to Karl and Ethel Miller and was the ninth child out of twelve children. At age nine he came to the Big Horn Basin where he and his brother Doug were raised by their foster dad JL North on the Harris farm which sat along the Greybull River. He worked with his dad and brother on the farm and attended school in Basin, Wyoming through his junior year until being called to serve his country during the Vietnam conflict. He was honorably discharged from the U.S. Air Force in 1967 at which time he came back home to do the only thing he ever wanted to do in life, farm. On February 13, 1968 he wed Bonnie J. Sayles. To this union were born three children: Jim, Will, and Shelly.
Winston served on the Big Horn Canal Company board for over thirty years and also served on the Big Horn Co-op board. Numerous times he was named as a top ten sugar grower for both Holly Sugar and Great Western Sugar. Winston was known by his friends as a hard worker, a loyal friend, and as someone who was always willing to help someone in need. He instilled in his family a strong work ethic, a love of farming and animals, and taught them to take pride in everything you do, and that family always comes first.
Winston was known as someone who was always striving to learn something new about farming and pass that knowledge along to others. He had an unmatched ability to choose the best livestock and to know and understand changing field and crop conditions. He took great pride in his livestock and often traveled all over with his wife and children to attend auctions and cow sales in search of good genetics. He had a love for animals and was a true steward of the land.
Winston, known for his wit and dry sense of humor, also took great pride in his family, especially his grandchildren. He always made sure they had what they needed and insisted on spoiling them with the best pedal tractors, bikes, and toys. He never let them leave the house for a road trip without making sure they had money for ice cream.
It is said that God made a farmer to be his caretaker. Winston our husband and father was one of his best. We take comfort in knowing he is pain free now and farming with his father in heaven.
He is survived by his wife Bonnie J. Miller of 51 years; children Jim (Debbie) Miller, Will Miller, Shelly (Peter) Rolando, Brenda Miller; grandchildren Michael (Kirbi) Miller, Ashley Miller, William Rolando, Jennie Rolando; great grand-daughter Oaklie Jean Miller; numerous nieces and nephews, and many other family members and friends.
At Winston’s request no services will be held. A celebration of his life will take place at a later date.
In lieu of flowers, please celebrate Winston’s life and love of agriculture by making a donation to a local FFA chapter in his name.