Goldia Miller celebrated her 100th birthday Wednesday.
Miller, who was born May 15, 1913, enjoyed a party thrown for her by her children and Crown Pointe Senior Living Community for her 100th birthday. Miller has been a resident of Decatur County for 95 of her 100 years; the other five years were spent with the family in Missouri.
Goldia has seen some major changes to the standard of living during the last 100 years and was present for many historic events right here in Decatur County.
Miller said she remembers when there were no cars or airplanes. She said she used to travel by horse and buggy or a two seat carriage. The day the first automobile came to Greensburg made such an impression on Goldia that she hasn’t forgotten it to this day.
Miller graduated from New Point High School in 1931. She went on to cook for the school several years after graduation. She married Carl H. Miller May 30, 1935 and the two had eight children together. Their children are Arlene Parker (E. Jack), Sue Hahn (Dan), Jim (Harriett), Larry (Sharon), and Doug (Beth) Miller of Greensburg; Peggy Weil (Joe) of Edgewood, Ky.; Dyar (Bertha) of Indianapolis; and the late Lowell (Kim) of Hope. Goldia and Carl shared 55 years together before his passing in 1990.
Miller’s family has grown by leaps and bounds over the last century. In addition to her eight children, Miller has 23 grandchildren, 44 great-grandchildren, and 12 (and counting) great-great-grandchildren.
Goldia worked as a nurse at Margaret Mary Community Hospital in Batesville and for a short while at Decatur County Memorial Hospital with her mother. She also did home nursing after she stopped working at the hospitals.
The Decatur County farm where Goldia spent most of her married life was homesteaded by her husband’s grandfather and has been in the family for more than 130 years. The farm received the homestead award in 1990, though it was already more than a century old at the time. Miller’s son, Doug, currently farms the land. Goldia lived on the farm until she moved to Crown Pointe in 2008.
Miller has been a lifetime member of the Smyrna Lutheran Church where she remains active. Goldia spoke fondly of quilting with other church members. She is also active with the New Point Fire Department, where her late husband was a charter member. Miller gives four $500 scholarships through the New Point Volunteer Fire Department every year in her husband’s memory.
Goldia spent most of her life in Decatur County, but when her husband decided he wanted to move to Missouri, she packed the family up and went with him. They lived there for five years, but eventually came back to Greensburg. Miller smiled as she remembered the time her late husband surprised her with their first car, which her sister taught her to drive.
Over the last century, Goldia witnessed many historic events in the Tree City. She spoke of watching President Franklin D. Roosevelt wave from the back of a train as he passed through Greensburg, but couldn’t recall the year. She also remembers the day President John F. Kennedy was assassinated in Dallas (Nov. 23, 1963) and was present at the speech Robert F. Kennedy gave at the Decatur County courthouse in May of 1968.
Many Greensburg residents will likely recollect Greensburg Community High School's reenactment of the historic speech that took place May 4.
Goldia now spends her days at Crown Pointe Senior Living Community where she still leads an active social life. Miller enjoys bingo, card games, dominoes, scrabble, and crafting with other residents and frequent visits with her children. Miller said Crown Pointe was a nice place to live and that she likes it there. She added that the staff takes good care of the residents, making sure they have everything they need. Miller said she feels genuinely cared for by the staff.
Miller’s birthday party was a crowded event as a century’s worth of friends and family gathered to wish her well. Greensburg Mayor Gary Herbert presented Miller with a certificate of congratulations and expressed his wishes for her continued health. He also jokingly added his desire for her to continue voting.
Goldia Miller has voted in every election since 1934 and is the county’s oldest registered voter. Music for the party was provided by local band “Scoop and the Guys.”
When asked what she wants from her 101st year, Goldia said she was just looking forward to staying healthy because she is already happy and enjoys her life.
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Contact: Amanda Browning 812-663-3111 x7004