Tribute to BZ Miller

BZ Miller made his home in June Lake for the pat 40 years.

BZ Miller made his home in June Lake for the pat 40 years.

Mono Supervisor Tim Alpers wrote this tribute to BZ Miller who recently passed away.  This excerpt from the Supervisors newsletter explains: 

June Lake CAC – At Tuesday’s meeting, the June Lake Citizens Advisory Committee met under difficult circumstances with the recent loss of its long-time Chairman BZ Miller. Brief comments and thoughts were shared regarding BZ’s leadership; his contributions to Mono County and its citizens; and the enormous impact his passing will have on the community. Jim Leddy read an eloquent letter of tribute from Supervisor Alpers, shared his own personal thoughts, and shared Board comments from earlier in the day, including the adjournment of the BOS meeting in BZ Miller’s honor. Following is Supervisor Alpers’ tribute:

It was my great pleasure to have known BZ Miller for over 30 years and, like everyone else, I was shocked by his untimely passing.  We worked on many public service projects over the years.  His dedication to the community of June Lake was exemplary and extraordinary.  It is hard to think of any committee that BZ DIDN’T serve on!  He was a Commissioner on the June Lake Fire Protection District Board, he served on the June Lake Public Utility District, he served on the June Lake Community Advisory Committee where he was chairman for the past 2 years.  He also served as head of the June Mountain Ski Patrol and on the Eastern Sierra Unified School Board.  In 1976, he was nominated by then Sheriff Martin Strelneck, and was awarded the California Hero Award for his effort to save the lives of skaters who had broken through the ice on June Lake.

In social as well as community business settings BZ was an organizer.  As a community leader, he always exhibited positive responsible behavior and yet created a fun atmosphere.  Although outspoken at times on particular issues, or on an individual citizen’s point of view, he never had anything personally negative to say about anyone.  This was one of the reasons why he was such a trustworthy and effective community leader.

BZ was an avid sportsman and outdoorsman.  One of my happiest days with him occurred on November 15, 2007.  This was the last day of fishing season for that year and the last day of public fishing on the Alpers Owens River Ranch as a change of property ownership was to happen soon.  All of the Ranch guests had checked out, so I invited BZ to come out to fish for the day.  He and Allie had the entire property to themselves that day and they couldn’t have been happier!  I had definitely picked the most deserving person to be the last fisherman of the 100 year run of the Alpers Ranch.

As a construction professional, BZ had few peers.  We worked together on a variety of difficult projects preserving historic buildings on the Alpers Ranch.  BZ’s philosophy was much like my father’s in that the impossible was standard operating procedure when living in the mountains, so just get used to it!  As I walk through our home on the shores of Mono Lake I can see BZ’s quality handiwork everywhere I look. As with us, his consistent attention to detail and creative thinking blended with the desires of his many clients made his projects unique and unforgettable.

The community of June Lake as well as the entire eastern Sierra was blessed to have had BZ Miller and his family as locals.  He set an example of professionalism, positive public conduct and committed family involvement that we all should aspire to.   His devotion and love to Barbara and his sons was evident to all who knew him.  We will miss, but never forget BZ Miller.


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