Natalie Sue Miller, founder of the Sue Miller Day of Caring for breast cancer awareness and education, passed away May 29, 2017, in Denver. Rabbis Steven Foster and Yaakov Chaitovsky and Cantor Joel Lichterman officiated at the May 30 service held at BMH-BJ. Interment followed at Mt. Nebo Cemetery. Feldman Mortuary made the arrangements.
“Sue was an inspiration and a role model to her children, grandchildren and countless others she touched over many decades of service to her community,” the family said.
“She believed everyone was important and opened her home and life to people of all backgrounds — listening, understanding and offering hope and ideas to all who sought them.”
Sue Miller was born on March 7, 1934, in Kansas City, Mo.
She moved to Denver in 1953.
A successful model, Sue was diagnosed with breast cancer at age 34. At that time, cancer was widely viewed as a fatal and potentially contagious disease.
Sue started arranging and participating in fashion shows that featured women who had undergone mastectomies as models. She passed around cards that read, “Cancer is not catching and we’re still beautiful.”
In the late 1970s, Sue met Jean Campa, a breast cancer educator. They joined forces to add an educational component to the fashion shows.
“I said, we have to have a name,” Sue told the IJN in 2004. “We need to have a day of caring for women. And Jean said, ‘That’s the name, Day of Caring.’”
The inaugural Sue Miller Day of Caring debuted in 1981. It was the first nonprofit breast cancer organization in Colorado.
By 2017, with attendees numbering in the thousands, the Day of Caring served more than 17,500 breast cancer patients and survivors with care, educational programs and financial assistance.
Sue relinquished control of the Day of Caring after suffering a mild stroke in 2002.
She obtained her BA in human services at age 60 and wrote I’m Tougher Than I Look at 70 to share her compelling story of survival.
Five years later, Sue earned an MA in counseling psychology and counselor education at UCD.
In addition to other honors, she was named to the Colorado Women’s Hall of Fame in 2002.
The family extends their deep appreciation to longtime caregivers Daizzie, Doris and Dena; the team at Denver Hospice; and loving friends who visited her frequently over the last several months.
Sue Miller is survived by her husband Harold Cohen; children Robert L. (Ivy) Miller, Leslie (Andy) Heins and David (Gail) Miller; grandchildren Joshua (Manya) Miller, Jeffrey (Risa), Miller, Nathan (Tara) Williams, Jeremy Williams, Tara, Alana and Zach Miller; and great-grandchildren Kayden and Kymber.
She was predeceased by her husbands Alan Miller and Skip Sigman.
Contributions may be made to the Sue Miller Day of Caring, 3700 Quebec St., #100-342, Denver, CO 80207; Denver Hospice; or charity of choice.
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