In an era when sales tax, and income tax were non existent and an additional horse for the hearse cost a nickel, Nicholas J. Miller founded his funeral home. The year was 1889, he was 32 years old and the N.J. Miller Funeral Home was located in downtown Rochester, N.Y. at 92 North Clinton Avenue (near Main and State Streets). Nicholas was both a cabinet maker and an upholsterer who made his own caskets. He moved to 90 North Street and eventually to 100 North Street, where he remained in business until his death. Nicholas died in his home on Manitou Street on October 16, 1916, at which time the reins of business were turned over to his son, Edward A. Miller.
Edward A. Miller 1888 – 1950
Struggle To Remain
Edward A. renamed the firm N.J. Miller’s Son Funeral Home and his initial years were not unlike any other struggling entrepreneur. During his career he moved from the leased funeral home on North Street to the South Avenue funeral home (purchased circa 1927).
Edward settled down with his wife Emma (Frank) and raised four children in the South Wedge area commonly called “Swillberg”.
Perhaps Edward’s persistent struggle to survive is best illustrated by a small event dealing with the purchase of a new funeral car. Edward purchased an automobile that was equipped with a new innovation – the automatic transmission. Despite repeated warnings by the salesman that he no longer needed to shift into different gears, Edward declined any instructions and drove off… only to be returned a short time thereafter without the transmission.
Despite this intractability, or perhaps because of it, he constructed the funeral home on Mount Hope Avenue (circa 1946). Edward A. died on September 13, 1950, in his home at 112 Gregory Hill Drive. Edward’s sons who had joined the firm at the conclusion of W.W.II, assumed management of the funeral homes.
Edward F. Miller 1920 – 2008
With the growth of the funeral homes Edward F. Miller incorporated the Firm in 1966 changing the name to Miller Funeral Homes, Inc. Edward, having been schooled at St. Boniface, Aquinas, & The University of Notre Dame went on to direct the funeral homes growth for 32 years until his retirement in 1982. Edward F., along with his wife Margaret (Kellett), raised a family of six children near the funeral home on Mount Hope Avenue.
Edward would not want any accolades or footnotes added to his career; but for myself and my sisters and brothers he was a wonderful father and remains our role model.
From this fourth generation of Millers, Edward J. Miller, after graduating from McQuaid Jesuit High School, Villanova University and the Rochester Institute of Technology MBA Program, succeeded his father; and is the current owner and president of the firm.
Edward married Lynda (Blauw) in 1974 (BLAUW’s Drug Store; South Clinton & Goodman Streets) and have raised a family of four children in Penfield, N.Y.
Edward J. Miller 1975 – Present
On January 15, 2000 my Father and I opened a new facility at the corner of Winton Road South and Jefferson Road. Having outgrown the other two facilities the funeral homes on Mount Hope Avenue and South Avenue were closed, and a new era was born to an old tradition.
Josh E. Miller 2003 – Present
It is a testament to those who came before me that this firm thrives today. This family business had traversed the ages from the birth of the automobile, to a man on the moon, and on to the electronic age where items are turning obsolete on their way home from the store. We take pride in the fact that generations of our family have been privileged to serve generations of Rochester families.
“What is most notable about our success and prosperity is that it is not ours alone. It mostly belongs to the sacrifices of our dedicated funeral directors and their supportive families that we have been privileged to work with over the years.”
Edward J. Miller
Born in Rochester, N.Y. in 1951 to Edward and Margaret (Kellett) Miller, I have lived in Rochester my entire life. I married Lynda Blauw in 1974 and raised four children in Penfield NY. The Blauw family, also a tradition of Rochester, owned Blauw’s Drug Store at the corner of South Goodman and Clinton Avenue South for several decades.
It is a testament to those who came before me that this firm thrives today. This family business had traversed the ages from the birth of the automobile, to a man on the moon, to face book and twitter; an age where items turn obsolete on their way home from the store. We take pride in the fact that generations of our family have been privileged to serve generations of Rochester families. On January 15, 2000 my father and I opened a new facility at the corner of Winton Road South and Jefferson Road. The same year the former funeral homes on Mount Hope Avenue and South Avenue were closed, and a new era was born to an old tradition.
Graduated from McQuaid Jesuit High School (1969), Villanova University (B.S. Business, 1973), Rochester Institute of Technology (M.B.A. 1975). I have been a N.Y.S. licensed funeral director since 1978 and I am a Certified PrePlan Consultant.
Fourth generation owner, succeeding my father in 1982, and the current CEO of the firm. As I write this my wife, Lynda and I are in the Hospital awaiting our first grandchild (10/27/2010). My son Josh is the President of Miller Funeral Homes, Inc. and as partners we hope to continue the traditions of our predecessors.
“What is most notable about our success and prosperity is that it is not ours alone. It mostly belongs to the sacrifices of our dedicated funeral directors and their supportive families that we have been privileged to work with over the years”
Born in 1978 to Lynda and Edward Miller I am a lifelong resident of Rochester. I married Sara (Smith) also a graduate of Penfield High School (1997); Sara is a social worker in Rochester’s health care industry. Sara and I reside in Brighton, NY.
Sara and I enjoy most things outdoors, backpacking, hiking, biking, running.. I am a 3 time marathon finisher (Eugene) (Philadelphia twice);I participated in North America’s largest relay race “Hood to Coast” spanning a distance of 197 miles.
I am a graduate of Penfield High School (1997); Portland State University (B.S. Business); SUNY Canton 2002 (A.A.S. Mortuary Science)
In 2002 I became the 5th generation to work in the family business; I am currently President of the company.
Sara and I have three daughters.
Along with my father Ed, I represent 121 years of experience, family ownership & service to our community.
HISTORY: Born in Rochester, NY in 1972, to Raymond and Mary Ann Miller, I am the youngest of 8 children. I have lived in Rochester my entire life. I reside in Chili with my dog Lilo.
EDUCATION: I am a graduate of Irondequoit High School (Class of 1990), SUNY Canton – AAS Mortuary Science (Class of 1992), and a New York State Licensed Funeral Director since 1993, I am also a CPC, (Certified PrePlan Consultant). I am actively involved with the Rochester Genesee Valley Funeral Directors Association, currently serving as Web-Master and Past-President.
PRESENT: One of the first questions that I am asked is how I am related to the Miller family, although I was born and raised in Irondequoit, I am not related to Ed & Josh Miller, but feel privileged to have worked with the Miller family for over 20 years. One of the greatest rewards in my work is taking over 125 years of caring by the Miller family and being able to use that to treat every family as if it were my own.
HISTORY: I began working at Miller Funeral Homes in 2004. Previously, I worked at Parsky Funeral Home, serving the Jewish Community for 8 years. In January 2005, I approached the Miller Family with the idea to utilize their existing facilities to open my own funeral home, specifically for the Jewish Community, thus the birth of Brighton Memorial Chapel, Inc. In June of 2008 Brighton Memorial Chapel, Inc. acquired Parsky Funeral Home.
EDUCATION: I am a graduate of Brighton High School (1992); State University of New York at Cobleskill, A.S. Business Administration (1994); University of Albany, B.S. Political Science (1996); Simmons Institute of Funeral Service, A.S. Mortuary Science (1997)
PRESENT: A fourth generation Rochesterian, my daughters, Edie & Pearl, and I live in Brighton, as do my parents, Miriam and Lloyd Krieger.
I am chairperson for the Jewish Federation’s Young Leadership Division and Yom Hashoah (Holocaust Remembrance) Committee; a member of the National Fraternal Organization Knights of Pythias, and the Jewish Funeral Directors of America.
Joe is a fourth generation Funeral Director who married his wife Cynthia Chase in 1982. They have 2 children, Francis “Frankie” Martin III and Benjamin P. Martin both of Henrietta.
After graduating from R-H Roth High School in 1978, Joe graduated from Monroe Community College in 1980 receiving his Associates in Business Administration. He then graduated from Simmons School of Mortuary Science in 1981. He served his internship with his Father and Grandfather and became a licensed Funeral Director in 1982.
In 1985 after the death of his Grandfather Vernon Halloran his family made him the Manager of Henry D. Halloran Son, Inc. Funeral Home. Joe merged Henry D. Halloran Son, Inc. with with Miller’s in April of 2011.
Joe is a life member of the West Henrietta Fire Department and has served over 30 years as a member of the Henrietta Fire District holding many offices including Chief currently serving on the Board of Fire Commissioners.
He is a charter member of the Genesee Valley Henrietta Moose Lodge #2290, a member of the Knights of Columbus #4812 and 4th Degree member of the Bishop Kearney Assembly Knights of Columbus.
He is a parishioner of St. Marianne Cope Parish.
Joe is also a two time Past President of the Rochester Genesee Valley Funeral Directors Association and a Past President of the New York State Funeral Directors Association.
HISTORY: I am a fourth generation Rochesterian, and the son of Chaz and Judy Zysman, My paternal grandmother Bella Zysman is a Holocaust survivor, and has lived in the Rochester community for nearly 60 years. My maternal grandparents, Dave (zt”l) and Roz Schreiber were both born in Rochester, and have served the Rochester Jewish community for many years.
EDUCATION: Hillel School (1993) Talmudical Institute of Upstate New York (1996) Yeshivat Ohr Yerushalayim – ISRAEL, A.S. Degree in Talmudic Law (1998) Monroe Community College, A.S. Degree in Business Administration (2000) Simmons Institute Of Funeral Service, A.S. Degree in Mortuary Science (2012)
Honors: Won NCSY Har Sinai Region’s ‘Chapter Advisor Of The Year’ award in 2000. Won Simmons Institute of Funeral Service ‘Excellence in Science’ and Excellence in Social Science’ awards in 2012. Served as President of Sigma Phi Sigma – Funeral Service Fraternity in 2012
HISTORY: I am a first generation Licensed Funeral Director born and raised in Colorado. I began my career in Funeral Service at the age of fifteen and was managing a Funeral Home by age twenty-two. In 2015, I relocated to continue my career in Rochester, NY and joined the Miller Team in 2017. I have been a part of Local Chambers and Rotaries, Folks in Aging, GRAPE and Interagency, as well as a volunteer for many other non-profit organizations in both CO and NY. I was a part of The Art of Dying. A 3-part in-progress documentary on Death and Dying film by producer Rich Lukon, and I am a strong advocate for positive death conversations and preplanning.
EDUCATION: I briefly studied in Ireland in 2011. Graduated Magna Cum Laude from Arapahoe College, Colorado, A.S. Degree in Mortuary Science in 2012, became licensed in New York in 2016 and graduated from the NYSFDA Leadership Academy in 2018. I am trained by Project Visibility: Person-Centered Care for LGBT Older Adults and was certified by the National Hospice Foundation of America in 2016 as a Funeral Service educator.
PRESENT: I am an active Board Member of and the Continuing Education Coordinator for the Rochester Genesee Valley Funeral Directors Association. I am a graduate of the New York State Funeral Directors Association Leadership Academy and a Continuing Education & Convention Education Committee Member.
I am currently working towards bettering the Funeral Profession by developing a S.T.A.R.R program for Residents and their Mentors. I reside in the Park Avenue area of Rochester with my dog, Gizmo.
I spend my free time enjoying all that Rochester has to offer but being a Funeral Director is my passion. Caring for families and their loved ones is the greatest honor and I do it with sincere compassion and respect.
HISTORY: I have been at Miller Funeral Homes, Inc since 2000
EDUCATION: I graduated from Penfield High School; State University at Buffalo and SUNY Canton
PRESENT: I reside in Rochester with my husband Sean and two young sons, Liam & Finnegan. My family is parishioner’s at St. Joseph’s Church in Penfield.
I am a member of the National Funeral Directors Association (NFDA), the Rochester Genesee Valley Funeral Directors Association (RGVFDA).
I am proud to volunteer for the Flower City Down Syndrome Network & the Special Olympics, two causes close to her heart. Additionally I enjoy volunteering at my children’s schools, spending time with family, scrap booking and the outdoors.
HISTORY: Raised in Altoona, Pennsylvania by William and Elsie Gardner, upon my graduation from Altoona Area Senior High School, I married and moved to Rochester, New York. My initial time in Rochester was spent raising four children who have graced me with four grandchildren and one great granddaughter.
In 1993 I joined Miller Funeral Homes as their office manager. I enjoy the many experiences and challenges I face on a day-to-day basis and take pride in the funeral homes continued growth. I hope to finish my working career with the Miller family and the people I have been privileged to work with.