Georgine "Genie" Miller

How truly amazing that one person could mean so much to so many

About Genie

Georgine "Genie" Clara Miller was born February 25, 1960 to George and Norma DiMartino.  As the youngest of 3 sisters (Linda Clyde and Karen Silver) it didn't take long for her independent nature and tenacious demeanor to become apparent. She would always and forever be one of the "Nebo Girls".

Genie graduated from the Mahoning County Joint Vocational School via Struthers High School in 1978 with focus in medical assisting. In 1979, she took her first optical job with Safeway Contact Lens Company which began her long and beloved career in the eye care field. It was there she studied to obtain her contact lens license.  She eventually became a licensed optician after working for various eye care facilities over the years.

Genie worked hard but never lost sight of the fun life had to offer. In 1981 she began to hang out with the person who would become her best friend, Cathy (Miller) Glasgow. The two had many adventures together, none of which were more important than their trips to North Carolina to visit Cathy's brother Walter who was a marine stationed at Camp Lejeune.

It didn't take long for Genie and Wally to fall in love and on May 21, 1983, the two were married. The couple lived in Jacksonville, NC until Wally was discharged later that year. They then moved back to their hometown of Struthers, Ohio.

The years passed by quickly, as they usually do when you live a content existence, surrounded by family and friends, enduring ups and downs, and experiencing all the joy and sorrow life has to offer. 

In 1998 Genie and Wally decided to move to Austintown, OH.  It was then she became concerned with and involved in eye care for children in need. Genie and Wally never had kids of their own but she loved her 6 nieces and nephews (Bob, Michael, Jennifer, Amy, Melissa and Michelle) immensely, often referring to them as her "pups".

She always carried a soft spot for helping kids.

After being pursued by Brodell Medical for years, Genie finally took a job with them in 2002 in Warren, Ohio. This job would be the stepping stone to altruism in her life. Under the influence of her new associates, Genie became involved with the Warren Relay for Life, where she and her co-workers worked tirelessly throughout the year raising money and donations.

On February 11, 2014, Genie received the terrible news that she had cancer. Her family rushed to her side from all corners of the country to help her prepare for the fight ahead. With the cancer spreading rapidly, her doctors, family, friends and co-workers sprung into action. Like a well oiled machine, her loved ones coordinated rides to treatments, meals, caring words, and the general goodwill and love befitting a woman who had always given the same when anyone needed her.

Strength of will and strength of body, however, are two very different things. 40 days later, the world lost a beautiful soul. Genie passed away on March 23, 2014 with her husband and family by her side.

While Genie may have lost her battle, her family and friends will never give up her fight. We have come together to found Genie in a Bottle Inc. in her honor; to carry out the love and goodwill that she always managed to add to this world.

So now we, Genie's family and closest friends, are asking for your assistance. Any way you can open your hearts to help us would be greatly appreciated, be it donations, volunteering or just an encouraging word to cheer us on.

Thank you in advance for all you do.


Our Tribute

Eulogy written by Michelle Clyde, Genie Miller's Goddaughter and Niece

John Lennon once said "When I was 5 years old, my mother told me that happiness was the key to life. When I went to school they asked me what I wanted to be when I grow up. I wrote down 'happy'. They told me I didn't understand the assignment... and I told them they didn't understand life.".

Our Genie understood life. She knew beyond all else the importance of happiness, of love, of family and of friendship. How truly amazing that one person could mean so much to so many.

We've all lost someone here today, someone who in some way made an impact on our lives, be it as a wife, a sister, an aunt, a mother figure or a friend. The pain that comes from that loss will take time to ebb into the place we will all undoubtedly hold for her in our hearts. In some way, for each of us, she made a difference... in some way she made life brighter.

There isn't a person in this room who wasn't touched by Genie in some way. If i were to ask each of you for your favorite memory of her we'd be here for days... Who could ever choose just one? Just talking with family and friends since I've been home, the memories have come spilling out. We've laughed, we've cried, and I couldn't help but think "my aunt has made an impact on so many people's lives". To know her was to instantly love her. And these past few days I've had with all of you, all the love I've felt, assured my broken heart that she will live on in the stories and laughter that each one of us takes forth from here today. Because love like this my dears, it doesn't go away, it remembers... It endures.

Whatever it may be that each of us believes in, there is one thing we can all agree on, Genie was larger than life. She was too much awesome to be contained in this mundane world. And each and every one of us is just a tiny bit cooler for having known her. I'd like to leave you today with something my aunt used to say to me when life had me knocked down or backed into a corner. Usually over a cocktail or three and a couple of tears she would pat my hand, give me a hug and say, "I know you're upset, and I know that you're hurting baby girl, but just like everything else.... This to shall pass."

The tears will subside, but her memory will always live within us. So until the time comes for her to pour me another glass of wine, I love you to the moon and back Aunt Genie.

Team Goes On Without Its Genie

Article by Brandon Merriman originally published in the Tribune Chronicle on May 27, 2014

While Relay For Life leaves participants hoping for a cure for cancer, one team's loss of its captain left them wishing for a cure as well.
Georgine "Genie" Miller, 54, passed away from cancer on March 23, about a month and a half before this year's Relay For Life in Warren on May 9.
Miller always made a point to tell others that her name was spelled with a G, like the genie who lives in a bottle.
Miller stepped up to be captain of the Brodell Medical team this year, along with co-captain Melanie Boucher, after longtime captain Sue Pappada retired.
Erin Glista, who organized Relay For Life in Warren, called Brodell Medical an amazing group that has been a part of the Warren Relay since the team formed 21 years ago.
Boucher, who worked with Miller, said the Brodell Medical office is like a family, and about half the office is involved with the Relay team.
Laurie Wilson, who worked with Miller and is a part of the team, said Miller was always willing to lend a hand.
"A lot of people work here, but she was always one to take initiative," Wilson said.
In her 12 years working at Brodell Medical, Genie had been an integral part of the team's success, especially when spearheading a craft show in 2012.

On Feb 11, an average work day, she went to the doctor.

"She had been having some coughing for a year, and was being treated for bronchitis and adult asthma, and then she became sick around New Year's," Boucher said. "She ended up having a chest x-ray, and it showed she had cancer in both lungs."
The diagnosis was a surprise to the office, since the gravity of cancer didn't seem to match her symptoms.
"We knew here that she had this cough and a little trouble with her breathing, but we never thought 'Oh, my God, she has all this cancer inside her,'" Boucher said.
Though she was at work the day of her diagnosis, she was unable to return to the office again.
"Many of us said 'She'll be back. She's a fighter, she's strong,'" Boucher said.
Further tests also revealed cancer in her bones, liver and brain.
Boucher said co-workers would take her to treatments, take her meals and visit her when they were able.
Though Miller's spirit was ready and willing to begin treatment, doctors said they had never seen cancer progress so fast, and that the radiation was ineffective. Forty days after her diagnosis, she was gone.
"We never thought all that would happen so fast," Boucher said. "We still feel like she's on vacation and she'll be back any time."
But the Relay continued. The team honored her with a "Genie in a Bottle" theme, all three of the wishes being for her. They also made buttons with her picture on them, which they plan on wearing at future relays.
Wilson said Miller's husband, sisters and nieces participated in the Relay in her memory, and will do so again next year.
Although the team had previously won awards for raising the most money, this year they came in third because of the complications. But, not for being idle.
"Since her diagnosis, we've done things to help raise money in the office for her and any expenses she was going to have with the treatment," Boucher said. "People in the office would see stuff that we had for sale, or ask about her and we'd tell them the situation and they would just want to give a donation to help her, out of the goodness of their heart."
Miller was not their only loss this year; Emil "Butch" Perunko, who did artwork for the Relay, also passed two weeks after Miller on April 14. Wilson said Miller and her husband were close to Butch and his wife Amy, who worked closely with Miller at Brodell Medical.
Brodell Medical is looking forward to celebrating their lives at the Relay next year. For now, the team is reflecting on time spent with Genie.

"We always were laughing and rooting people on in the rain (at the Relay)," Wilson said. "We were constantly in the rain."