Matthew Van Miller of Three Rivers died Friday, Jan. 16, 2015, of a sudden cardiac event. He was 57.
Friends of Matt’s would like to invite all of his friends and family to join them Sunday, Feb. 8, in celebrating Matt’s life. Bring your stories and photos to share. A pool tournament will start at 2 p.m., followed a potluck. They have arranged for AC Myles, one of his favorite blues bands, to play for this private party.
Matt was born December 4, 1957, to Richard H. and Patricia M. Miller. He was raised in the Artesia and Lakewood areas of Southern California, attending Artesia High School.
Matt never married and had no children. He lived in Three Rivers for the past seven years. He was a career carpenter, electrician, and painter, but did not say no to plumbing.
Matt is survived by his sister, Chris Schlossin of Three Rivers; brothers Klaude (Tony) Miller, Richard Wilhelm (Billy) Miller, and Dell Stephen Miller; nieces Arcka Schlossin, Noel Miller, Sara Miller, and Trisha Miller; and nephews Kristofer Schlossin, Jimmy Miller, Keevin Miller, Isaac Miller, and Isaiah Miller; great-niece EmaLyn; and great-nephew Tyler Rex.
From Matt’s sister, Chris Schlossin:
My brother Matt came to Three Rivers in 2007, soon after our Mom passed away. He came to live with us, and I am so thankful that he did. It gave us a chance to reconnect and get to know each other again. Matt helped me out around the motel and was a huge help to my husband, Tom.
Matt was so happy to be in Three Rivers, and he often said he wished he had gotten here sooner. He made lots of friends in Three Rivers, many who have shared with me how deeply affected they are by his passing.
Matt volunteered all the time around town. He would help out with local fundraisers, donating his time to paint the local museum, picking up trash at the lake, and helping out when his friends needed anything.
He also helped coach Three Rivers Union School’s baseball team for the past four years. This last season, the team was undefeated and Matt was beaming.
He loved to play his guitar on jam nights at the River View and was a substitute guitarist for some of the local bands. He was always playing his guitar around the house and/or singing something, and it was great for all of us, which makes the silence of the past few weeks seem really loud.
Matt was always a prankster, even as a little kid, and if you knew him, you knew about his pair of crazy teeth. He would wear them just to get a rise out of someone. He always had something funny and witty to add to a conversation, along with a broad range of knowledge to share.
He was talented in many ways, carpentry, electrical, painter, drywall. He was the champion pool player around town and the one to beat, which didn’t happen too often.
Matt was a special great-uncle and such fun to watch when he was playing with my grandchildren, Ema, almost 2½ years, and Tyler, 2. He would come home sometimes and see their toys trailing throughout the house and say, “Ah, the little peoples were here today.” Even our dog, Abby, and cat Mona are missing him as Matt played daily with both of them. They all were good buds.
Tom and I are having a challenging time with Matt’s leaving, as it seems every which way we turn, there is something, big and small, that reminds us of him. Then comes the acknowledgment that he is gone, and it hurts.
Hug your family and friends if you can. If not, give them a call, an email. Please, don’t put it off if you can help it. It’s startling how suddenly things can change and how fast time passes.