James “Sarge” Miller, 75, died on December 6th, 2023, at his home in McCordsville, Indiana.
Throughout his life, Jim was a man who served.
He was born on July 5th, 1948, in Indianapolis, to John and Annabelle Miller. As a young boy, he delivered groceries to the elderly from his family’s grocery store, Miller’s Market, on College Road. (One customer always insisted on tipping him a nickel.) As a teenager, he helped manage a newly formed rock band, Sir Winston and the Commons, convincing the band to pay some girls to scream (because surely, other girls in the crowd would then scream, too).
When Jim was 17, he enlisted. From 1966 to 1969, he served in Vietnam in the 86th Combat Engineer Battalion. Jim’s nickname was “Sarge”. He was a sergeant in the Army, in the military police, and on the McCordsville Police Department, of which he was a founding member. Jim was also a volunteer firefighter and EMT for the Acton Fire Department. Once, when a driver was trapped under his vehicle, Jim slipped under the wreckage to stay with the man until other help arrived. Jim received a medal from the mayor.
He was the youngest warehouse foreman in the U.S. Army Commissary at Fort Benjamin Harrison and traveled often to other stores to train other foremen.
Jim served as the commissary’s suicide prevention officer because people were so comfortable talking to him.
Jim was always easy to talk to. He’d leave a waiting room with a new friend?and a tip about a fabulous fishing hole.
Jim raised his children as a single father, at the time, that was rare.
In 1987, he met Karen Armstrong and they married in 2005, following a 118-year8 year courtship. Jim liked Irish and Scottish music, fishing and camping, and finding a good deal. He could spend hours comparing prices online. At the Walnut Grove Campground, he’d catch and release bass, while Karen sat on the banks doing Sudoku.
Jim is survived by his wife, Karen Armstrong, two sons Jamie Miller and Aaron Armstrong, a daughter, three grandsons, a granddaughter and a nephew.
A memorial gathering will be held on Tuesday, December 12, 2023, from 12:00 Noon to 2:00 PM at Flanner Buchanan Washington Park East Funeral Center. His Memorial Service will follow at 2:00 PM.