On March 23, 1953, Rodney J. Miller was born to Joe B. Miller, Jr. and Sylvia J. Waldrip in Artesia. Rodney was the first of 5 children, older brother to Johnny, Richard Mark, Peggy D and JoBeth. Rodney spent much of his youth in Loco Hills, Yeso, Portales, Hagerman and Artesia, farming and playing sports. He played football and made the state championship team at Artesia High School in 1969. Upon graduation, he attended Texas Tech University on a football scholarship, only to discover that his knees don’t bend backwards. Once he recovered from knee surgery, Rodney enlisted in the US Navy and was shipped out during the Vietnam era. Like many young men, Rodney came back from that time a different man. He left the Navy to attend New Mexico State University to major in General Agriculture, Parasitology, Fisheries and Wildlife Management.
During the summer months, Rodney worked for the Bureau of Land Management in Las Cruces, initially as a firefighter and later as a gunnery technician at the MacGregor Range. Rodney left NMSU and moved to Roswell, where he began working at Transwestern Pipeline and watched the company transition from Texas Eastern to Northern Energy, from Enron to Agave Energy. Rodney transferred to Artesia under the Enron regime in 1986. He remained at Artesia until 2003 when he transferred back to Roswell. Rodney left Yates/Agave and went to work for Wildcat Measurement, ACA Mid-Stream and Frontier Field Services, covering the Roswell to Hobbs area.
Rodney met and married Dianna Parker, who was with him until the end of his life. Rodney continued to work in the oil field until he and Dianna decided to retire and travel the United States. But his health had begun to decline rapidly, so they had to give up that dream.
Rodney was an incredible athlete, playing after high school and college, flag football, softball, and basketball, but his true joy (beyond his kids) was hunting. He hunted pronghorn, deer, elk, javelin, squirrel, quail and dove, but he said the most challenging hunt was spring turkey. He covered much of the country from the southern border of NM and Arizona, north to Colorado and east to Texas. He loved to hunt dogs and watch them work. As age approached, he took up fishing again and returned to southwestern Colorado, where he and his family had fished and camped during his youth. When it wasn’t hunting season, Rodney put out in a large garden, growing tomatoes, chili, squash, green beans, okra, watermelon, cantaloupe, and sometimes corn. He loved to till the garden, plant the seeds and cut the weeds, but he didn’t like to pick the garden. He always had enough to share with his extended family, neighbors, and coworkers, and in most years, he planted specific vegetables for his loved ones.
Rodney was a lifelong Baptist and most recently attended 1st Baptist Church and Berrendo Baptist Church in Roswell. His faith and belief in the Lord was always strong. Rodney passed away quietly on the night of August 10, 2022, at home with Dianna by his side. Waiting for Rodney are his daughter Helen Aubrey, son Jay T, sister JoBeth, stepfather Jim McCauley, aunt Jackie Shipman, cousin and close friend Tommy Shipman, uncle Jay Waldrip, as well as other family and friends. . along with multiple hunting dogs.
He leaves behind his wife Dianna, his daughter Michelle Miller Pisciotta and her husband Tom from the Dallas area, his son Chance Miller and his wife Annette and his grandchildren, Benjamin and Austin in Las Cruces. Also in mourning were his mother Sylvia McCauley in Houston, his brothers Johnny Miller and family from Kansas City Missouri and Richard Mark Miller and family, his sister Peggy Miller and family also in Houston, his father Joe B. Miller, Jr. from Artesia. Also ex-wives: Paula Brown Miller, mother of Michelle and Helen Miller, mother of Helen Aubrey, Jay T. and Chance Miller and many other aunts, uncles, cousins and more friends than most people.
A memorial service will be held on Saturday, September 24, 2022, at First Baptist Church in Roswell, New Mexico, at 11:00 a.m.
Join us for a gathering to celebrate Rodney’s life at 12:30 pm Bring along music you associate with Rodney and share your memories and stories of good times.
In lieu of flowers, donate to Wounded Warriors at https://support.woundedwarriorproject.org, Baptist Children’s Home at Portales at https://www.nmbch.com, or the American Cancer Society at https://www.cancer .org, or to any organization of your choice.
Please take a moment and share a kind thought or memory with Rodney’s family at www.andersonbethany.com
Rodney’s tribute was written in his honor by his family.