Tributes flow for Eaglehawk icon

THERE are two things that tend to come up when people talk about Bendigo High School Alumni, Lola Miller – her inexhaustible energy and her unwavering commitment to her beloved Eaglehawk community.

Mrs Miller, affectionately referred to by many as ‘Mrs Eaglehawk’ or the ‘Queen of Eaglehawk’, passed away peacefully in her sleep on Sunday at the age of 86.

Born and raised in the area, she was once a school teacher at Eaglehawk High School (now Eaglehawk Secondary College) and went on to serve as the mayor of the former Borough of Eaglehawk from 1992 to 1993.

Her son, Tim Miller, said his mother was “caring… always there for you, hardworking, very charitable, very strong”.

She extended these virtues to her community, making valuable and lasting contributions to a long list of organisations and events, including the former Eaglehawk Swimming Club, the Dahlia and Arts Festival, and Bendigo Health, among many others.

Even in her later years, at a time when many people shift their lives down to a slower pace, Mrs Miller was still heavily involved with several groups, the Rotary Club of Eaglehawk and the Eaglehawk Citizens’ Brass Band among them.

“(Her) passion for life and the energy she gave out… was just something to behold,” band secretary Louise Wellard said.

Rotary secretary Alison Bacon said Mrs Miller would get involved in anything that would be of benefit to her community.

She said it was difficult to name everything she had had a hand in because there had been so many over the years.

“She was an incredibly active and enthusiastic person,” Mrs Bacon said.

“Whatever she got involved in, she gave it 110 per cent, and she was renowned for that.”

Lorraine Foti said Mrs Miller and her late husband Bill had been a “wonderful example” for her own grandchildren – the Millers’ great-grandchildren – with their passion for and dedication to the community.

“What they did for the community was amazing,” Mrs Foti said.

She described Mrs Miller as a caring and “very special” person who loved her family, never missing a birthday or Christmas.

“She just left this legacy of a family you really wanted to belong to,” Mrs Foti said.

While Mr Miller said his mother did not seek the spotlight, her contributions did not go unnoticed by the wider community: she was awarded several civic honours, including the British Empire Medal.

A service will be held at the Eaglehawk Uniting Church on Friday at 2 pm.


Natalie Croxon – Bendigo Advertiser