James Louis Miller passed away June 16, 2021
James Louis “Jimbo” Miller passed away unexpectedly on June 16, 2021.
Born and raised in Pearland, Texas, he graduated from Jessie H. Jones High School in 1967. He spent the following year studying theology and surfing in Hawaii until drafted to serve in the 36th Infantry Airborne Division in Vietnam.
Settling in Austin, he met his wife and sparring partner of 45 years, Ruth Elaine Cook, and raised his children. After working various jobs, he chose a career at Southwestern Bell — now AT&T — from which he retired after 31 dedicated years and serving as union steward for the Communication Workers of America-Local 6206.
Retiring to Lone Grove, Texas, he continued to stay active in his community, volunteering for the Democratic Party for several local state and federal elections. He was a water tester for the Colorado River Watch Network/Lower Colorado River Authority for 13 years, serving devotedly to the health of the river for he believed “what happens to the water, happens to the people.”
He had a passion for politics, history, Harley-Davidsons and Morris Minors, chickens and gardening, black licorice and Eight O’Clock coffee, and cooking and baking. He made the best pineapple upside down cakes. He had a love for soccer, coaching both his children and adult co-ed and served for several years as referee commissioner for SAYSA.
His greatest passion being bluegrass and traditional folk music, Jimbo played many instruments, including goat-bones, fiddle, guitar, bass guitar, standup bass, and banjo. His sheer joy of playing with other musicians was inspiring to witness.
He was preceded in death by his parents, Bertha O’Brien Miller and Luther Lloyd Miller; parents-in-law, Mabel Webster Cook and Grover Merrill Cook; and sister-in-law Margaret Merrill “Maggie” Cook Polacheck.
He is survived by his wife, Ruth Cook Miller; children, Luke Miller and Betty Miller Snell; brother, Lloyd Luther Miller and wife Maxine Miller; devoted nieces Karen Miller, Susan Miller Zapalac, and Angela Polacheck; grandchildren, Carson Miller, Jordan Miller, and Milo Snell; and many nieces, great-nieces, and great-nephews.
A private ceremony will be held for immediate family on July 4 at Board Branch Cemetery in Lone Grove. A celebration of life on Oct. 10 will be held at the Lone Grove Schoolhouse from 2 p.m. until dusk with barbecue, iced tea, live music, and many great memories to be made and shared. His friends have requested (but not required) overalls as memorial attire, for if you knew Jimbo, you knew him to be in his pin-stripped overalls, bright red shoes, and straw sombrero hat — his “going out suit.”
Memorial contributions may be made in his honor for those who wish to donate to the Lone Grove Schoolhouse/Community Club Inc. c/o Sandra Overstreet 2619 CR 202 Llano, TX 78643, or to the Llano Library System, 102 E. Haynie St. Llano, TX 78643
Funeral arrangements made under the direction of Waldrope-Hatfield-Hawthorne Funeral Homes Inc. of Llano. Email condolences to firstname.lastname@example.org.