Cover photo for Kathryn Rose Miller's Obituary
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1932 Kathryn 2024

Kathryn Rose Miller

January 13, 1932 — January 7, 2024

Kathryn Rose (Staub) Miller, 91, born January 13, 1932 in Clarksville, IL, died January 7, 2024 at her home surrounded by family. Kay grew up in Marshall, IL with her parents Joseph and Annette Staub and 8 siblings. As a youth, she was an active member of the 4H club and fondly remembered her favorite project, "raising 101 little ducks; one of which had only one leg." After graduating from Marshall HS, Kay matriculated at Eastern Illinois Teachers College where she was involved in many clubs including Newman House and the Puppeteers. While there she met and married her late husband, Charles Miller. After graduation, Kay taught physical education in Casey, IL for 2 years before the couple moved to Palatine and raised their five children, Charles III (Kelly), Annette (Dave) Haag, Joseph (Sharon), Michael (Nancy), and Margaret (James) Goodwin. Kay was dedicated to her family and community. She was both a Boy and Girl Scout leader for each of her children. As her children grew, she became passionate about collecting memorabilia, attending flea markets, swap meets and car shows and visiting all the neighborhood garage sales. She later worked and retired from Sears Roebuck and Company at Woodfield Mall. In the early 1980's she studied sign language and clowning which prompted her to renew her teaching license and begin teaching clown classes for District 214's Continuing Education Program. For the next 3 decades, she was known in the Chicagoland area and beyond as OKay the Clown. She offered classes on balloon animals, face painting, puppeteering and juggling. She taught her students how to apply make-up to create a unique clown face and in her own words felt, "A little star on the nose always adds a little life to the face." She believed that anyone could be a clown and bring happiness to others. She was a member of the AOK Alley of Klowns and the Fifty Funny Faces. As a performer and teacher, she brought joy to countless people with balloon animals, juggling and face painting. OKay the Clown taught grade school students to make music using sign language so they could communicate more effectively with deaf classmates. Even though she loved performing at birthday parties, grand openings, parades and other entertainment venues, there was a special place in her heart for volunteering her time at nursing homes and residential facilities for those with developmental disabilities in order to bring a smile and laughter to everyone. She was a catechist and parishioner at St. Theresa Parish in Palatine for over 60 years and enjoyed teaching CCD and involving her grandkids in her faith. In her later years, she loved playing Chinese Checkers, Euchre and doing puzzles. Recently she was a member of Cherished Place Senior Day Club where she enjoyed leading morning exercises and the lunchtime prayer. In her brief, nearly 92 years, she lived each day true to her core beliefs to have fun because life is too short. She is preceded in death by seven siblings and one grandchild, and survived by her youngest sister, Mary, five children, eight grandchildren, two great- grandchildren and countless nieces and nephews. A visitation will be held on Thursday, March 7, 2024 from 3:00 PM – 8:00 PM at Ahlgrim Family Funeral Home, 201 N. Northwest Hwy., Palatine. A Funeral Mass will be held on Friday, March 8, 2024 at 10:00 AM at St. Theresa Catholic Church, 445 N. Benton St. Palatine.

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Service Schedule

Past Services

Memorial Gathering

Thursday, March 7, 2024

3:00 - 8:00 pm (Central time)

Ahlgrim Family Funeral Home

201 N Northwest Hwy, Palatine, IL 60067

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.


Friday, March 8, 2024

Starts at 10:00 am (Central time)

St. Theresa Catholic Church

455 N Benton St, Palatine, IL 60067

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.


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