Dorene Miller

Dorene Miller

1932 – 2023


IDA GROVE - Dorene Ann Miller, 91, beloved mother and grandmother, passed into our heavenly father’s arms on Wednesday, Dec. 6, 2023, at Willow Dale Wellness in Battle Creek after struggling with congestive heart failure over the past few months. 

A Memorial Service will be held at 10:30 a.m., on Wednesday, Dec. 13, 2023, at the St. Paul Lutheran Church of Ida Grove. Rev. Neil Wehmas will officiate. Committal Services will follow in the Ida Grove Cemetery of Ida Grove.

A Visitation will be held from 5-7 p.m., on Tuesday, Dec. 12, 2023, at the St. Paul Lutheran Church of Ida Grove. 

The Christensen-Van Houten Funeral Home of Ida Grove, is in charge of the funeral arrangements. Condolences may be sent online at

Dorene was a life-long resident of Ida Grove, born on March 29, 1932, to Dewey Elmer and Neva Catherine Burns.  

Dorene was very active in her high school years at Ida Grove High participating in cheerleading, chorus, Glee Club, Girls’ Athletic Association (President 4th year), class play, Thespian Club, student council, Operetta, Pep Club, FHA, Pepper Steppers, and just about anything she could get into. She was a member of the “Rainbow Girls” at the Methodist church, serving in various levels including the highest and level of Worthy Advisor. As a young girl, she was full of energy and just couldn’t stop doing cartwheels! She would do cartwheels all the way home after school.  

Dorene graduated from Ida Grove High School in 1950 and married her high school sweetheart, Marvin E. Miller, on Jan. 27, 1951, in St. Paul Lutheran Church in Ida Grove. Dorene became a member of St. Paul Lutheran and served many years in the women’s circle group. Marvin and Dorene were blessed with five children and Dorene enjoyed attending sporting events and dance recitals that her children participated in. She enjoyed family vacations every summer, especially camping on “Miller Mountain” near Estes Park, camping at “Tom-Peg” in the Black Hills, camping in Yellowstone in fear of bears, and many more vacations including visiting the Hearst Castle, and visits to Illinois and Wisconsin visiting family. When she was 80, Dorene traveled to Las Vegas by Amtrak with her daughters and had a chance to play in the big casinos, also visiting Death Valley and the new Hoover Dam.  

Dorene was a busy mother of five, but she also held several jobs over the years. She was a bookkeeper at the JCPenney store, and worked at Casey’s and Mary’s Kitchen in later years. In her younger years, she bowled weekly on a league and played in card groups. In her later years, she enjoyed Bingo and penny slot machines at the casino. She knew the complete genealogy of Ida Grove and could remember what families lived in what houses throughout the town’s history.

Marvin and Dorene celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary in 2001 and enjoyed 54 years of marriage until Marvin’s passing in 2005. Dorene was a grandmother to 10 and great grandmother to 16. She enjoyed family gatherings and playing Nickels late into the night. She will be dearly missed around the table.

Dorene was the last of the “generation of aunts and uncles” on the Miller and Burns sides of the family. She is survived by her daughters Camy Lunzman (Steve) of Peoria, Illinois, Peggy Rainbow (Gary) of Madison, Wisconsin, Cindy Duitsman of Sac City, and Misti Baker of Ida Grove; grandchildren Katie Lunzman of Peoria, Illinois, Amber Sampier (Kevin) of Trivoli, Illinois, Erika Atkinson (Keith) of Chillicothe, Illinois, Jennifer Duitsman-Coy (Darrick) of Gaylord, Michigan, Stephanie Duitsman of Sac City, Chris Miller-West (Jamie) of Ida Grove, Nick West of Ida Grove, Shae Baker of Ida Grove, Sarah Sigrist (John) of Hartland, Wisconsin, and Danny Rainbow (Tawnya) of Stevens Point, Wisconsin; great grandchildren Joy, Noah, Annabelle, Wyatt, Whitney, Sawyer, Charlie, Jack, Tatum, Kevin, Kristen, Annika, Malcolm, Clara, Victor, and Roslyn; numerous extended family, nieces and nephews.

She was preceded in death by her husband Marvin Miller; son Tracey Miller; sons-in-laws Thorben Duitsman, John “Jack” Baker, and John West; sister Bonita Crawford and husband Floyd Crawford; brother Robert “Bob” Burns and wife Evelyn Burns.


Services: Dec. 13, St. Paul Lutheran Church, Ida Grove

Burial: Ida Grove Cemetery, Ida Grove

Christensen-Van Houten Funeral Home • Ida Grove • 712-364-2727



The Ida County Courier

Ida County Courier
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Ida Grove, Iowa 51445
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