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Sister Jeanne Mary Miller, BVM

Sister Jeanne Mary Miller, BVM, 86, of Mount Carmel Bluffs, 1160 Carmel Drive, Dubuque, Iowa, died Sunday, Nov. 5, 2023.

Visitation of cremated remains will be from 9-9:30 a.m. on Wednesday, Nov. 8, 2023, in the Mary Frances Clarke Chapel at Mount Carmel Bluffs. Sharing of Memories will be at 9:30 a.m., followed immediately by the Mass of Christian Burial. Burial is in the Mount Carmel Cemetery.

She was born on Nov. 22, 1936, in Seattle to John and Helen (Grummett) Miller. She entered the BVM congregation Sept. 8, 1955, from St. Charles Parish, North Hollywood, Calif. She professed first vows on Feb. 3, 1958, and final vows on July 16, 1963.

Sister Jeanne Mary served as an elementary teacher at Iowa City Catholic and volunteered at Regina Education Center, both in Iowa City, Iowa. She also was an elementary teacher at Holy Name in Chicago; St. Odilo in Berwyn, Ill.; Holy Cross in Kalaheo, Kauai, Hawaii. She ministered as a religion teacher and director of ministries at Our Lady of Lourdes in Tujunga, Calif.

“A photo of Jeanne Mary posted. . . on Facebook. . . created a flood of comments calling Jeanne Mary ‘an amazing teacher,’ ‘a wonderful person,’ ‘a generous soul,’ and ‘one of the most patient, positive, and dedicated people I know.’ [One former student wrote,] ‘Sister Jeanne Mary taught me so many things . . .the value of hard work, the joy of learning, and how to play the ukulele. . . She was energetic, passionate, and a fantastic role model. She made us work hard and like it! She is the reason I wanted to be a teacher.’” (Eulogy).

She was preceded in death by her parents, a sister Nancy Borges, and a brother Michael (Shirley) Miller. She is survived by a brother Mark (Linda) Miller, Salem, Va.; a brother-in-law Jerry Borges, Aiea, Hawaii; nieces, nephews, and the Sisters of Charity, BVM, with whom she shared life for 68 years.

Memorials may be given to Sisters of Charity, BVM, 1100 Carmel Drive, Dubuque, IA 52003 or make an online gift.

Watch Memorial Mass and Sharing of Memories

Download Eulogy

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This Post Has 12 Comments
  1. Always enjoyed visiting with Jeanne Mary. She was a great contributor to the set. She probably has the angels laughing as we regret her leaving us.

    Hannah Little Spalding,
    Set of 1955

  2. So sorry to hear of her death. Sister Jean Mary was the music teacher for our children after returning from Hawaii. We will never forget their first ukulele concert. White shirts / blouses and dark colored skirts or slacks. Lovely pompom tissue leis. We had reconnected in the last few years at Regina/ St Mary’s Church. She was a beautiful example of sisterhood. Rest in peace

  3. Sister Jeanne Mary was such an amazing person and was there for my family during my mother’s death.

    God bless you and thank you for being an amazing guide throughout our lives.


  4. This is sad news. She was my 8th grade teacher at Our Lady of Lords in Tujunga. She was more than an educator. She was a mentor and a support system for kids. Rest in peace.

  5. Sr. Jeanne Mary was the 8th grade teacher at Our Lady of Lourdes (O.L.L.) school and church in Tujunga, CA. She was respected and loved by parents and the kids, including myself. She could command a room to silence just by standing still, waiting, then smiling. She could end a child’s hiccups by inviting them to stand in the “magic square” at the front of the class. She occasionally helped kids when their baby teeth came out. She was sweet, kind, lighthearted, firm, direct, and clear. As a young child I felt respected and cared for. And encouraged. She taught “the big kids” – the Eight Graders (!). Over the years when I’ve thought of her it has always been with a smile, knowing I was lucky to have a few classes with her. I don’t know what she taught at other schools. I can only imagine the size of her legacy, having taught- and demonstrated kindness towards- thousands of children over decades. A legend in my mind and heart. Thank you, sister. Rest.
    In Gratitude,
    Daniel Fresquez O.L.L. class ‘91

  6. Sr Jeanne was my Jr High School teacher at Our Lady of Lourdes. She was a tremendous role model for me. I looked up to her more than she could ever know. She touched so many lives and now I pray for her eternal peace.

  7. Sister Jeanne Mary was my 7th and 8th grade teacher at Our Lady of Lourdes in Tujunga, California. She was my favorite teacher. She used to run the candy store after school and that’s how we students would get community service points. I would work the candy store for different students, and I had such a blast doing that with her. For community service we would also do things weekly and one of the things that I would always choose would be to vacuum the convent. I enjoyed it immensely and I enjoyed running into the sisters that were there. She was also extremely funny. I don’t know if many people know that about her, but she had an amazing sense of humor. I remember any time that something would happen in class like somebody would spell glue or something would go wrong, she would grab her head with her hands and do this squat and yell out, “Oh my stars!” She would have the whole class laughing. She was a very sensitive, caring, gentle and warm person. I feel very blessed to have known her and spent time with her. I did send an email to the BVM sisters months ago, maybe even a year ago, to give to Sister Jeanne, I don’t know if she ever received it. I hope that she did. I expressed in that email how much she meant to me and how I think about her quite a bit. I hope she’s up there with my big brother, Fred telling him what’s what, like only she could do. God bless you, Sister Jeanne. I’m sure you’re up there amongst the angels and I’m certain you’re one of them now. Thank you for blessing me with your presence. It was an honor and a privilege to know you.

    God Bless,
    Rosemarie Bernet-Babcock ♥️🙏🏻

  8. Sister Jeanne taught my 4 children at OLL School in Tujunga. She was amazing! She shared quite a few family celebrations of my children’s Communions, and Confirmations at our home. Enjoying Italian food and a glass of wine.
    God speed Sister Jeanne…thank you so much for all you have done for so many.

    Jean Bernet
    Fred, Rosemarie, Suzanne, and Chris

  9. Sr. Jeanne Mary was teaching at my school for the 8 years that I was there. She was always so nice. I will always think of her fondly.
    Thank you for your service to us all!
    Much Love,

  10. Sister Jeanne Mary was a Godsend! She volunteered in my third grade classroom at Regina Elementary helping my little ones for many years. She was a wonderful addition to our classroom, an excellent educator, and the children adored her! ❤️

  11. Sister Jeanne Mary Miller was my sixth-grade teacher at St. Patrick’s Catholic School in Iowa City, IA. I am now 64 years old so that was quite a while ago, but I still remember her warm heart, great sense of humor, and how she made all the kids in my class feel special. I appreciated her great energy and her willingness to create opportunities for us to help us to learn and grow together. I remember the ukulele club (we played at mass in the mornings before school), knitting club, our candy store, our class newspaper, and I recall how cool it was to change the entire classroom into a castle when we studied Charlemagne. Sister was loving and I remember that I couldn’t wait to go to school each day to see her and what she would dream up next. At our class reunion years ago, I was delighted that sister attended. She was an absolutely wonderful person, and the fond memories I have for her will last forever. God bless you, Sister Jeanne Mary Miller

  12. Sister Jeanne Mary Miller has influenced me too!! When I think of playing Ukulele, knitting class, or the Roman Empire construction in drawing class on large sheets of paper, she had us captivated. She taught a ukulele class, that a group of 6th grade girls who created a song that respected her! What joy she brought to so many people. Mary McLaughlin Castillo

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