August 14, 1928 – August 9, 2020
Heading out on her next adventure, Mildred Mary (Muckler) Masteller died peacefully, surrounded by her daughters. Mil was born and raised in Gilman, Iowa, the daughter of Elizabeth and Verle Muckler. As a kid she worked the usual farm jobs such as weeding and de-tasseling corn, and her first non-farm job was assembling cardboard boxes at the canning plant in Gilman. After high school she attended Iowa State University, where she earned her degree in Dietetics. It was at ISU where she met Richard Masteller, who later became her husband. Mil completed her degree with an internship in Portland where, among other things, she learned to ski and love the mountains. Mil and Dick married in 1953, beginning their life together stationed at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base in Ohio.
Mil was an outgoing and adventurous young woman; one summer during college she worked at a dude ranch in Allen’s Park, Colorado. This experience was the seed that eventually led Mil and Dick to settle in Littleton, Colorado. They celebrated their 66th wedding anniversary in 2019!
Mil and Dick raised six children, and Mom worked hard to ensure our family had delicious, colorful meals, that our clothes were clean, and that everyone finished their homework and chores. She loved horses, flowers, birds (especially hummingbirds), gardening, playing games, and travel. Mil and Dick were avid bridge players and even in their late 80’s ranked right at the top of their bridge club. They made many trips to Alaska, where she enjoyed fishing for salmon, and they toured Europe, Costa Rica, Mexico and Hawaii as well.
Mom was a tremendous role model, instilling a love of family, education and adventure. She kept us organized on all our family adventures such as hiking, camping, jeeping and skiing. And seriously, how many young parents today can imagine car-camping with six kids and a Coleman 2-burner stove? When the youngest of her children reached high school Mil went back to school to renew her Registered Dietician credentials; she then worked several years in Denver hospitals. Through the years she and Dick frequently hosted large family gatherings, where you would often find her gently rocking a tiny grand- or great-grandchild to sleep on her shoulder. In her later years those little kids sure made her face light up!
Mil will remain forever in our hearts, and she will be dearly missed. She is survived by her children Diane Siegele (Bill), Mark Masteller (Judy), Mary Masteller, Phyllis Anderson (Terry) and Jan Johnson (Brad), 13 grandchildren and 10 great-grandchildren. She is predeceased by her husband Dick, son DJ, and her brother Duane.
Our family extends our sincere thanks to the staff at StoneCreek Littleton for the loving care they provided, especially in these difficult circumstances, and to the staff at Drinkwine Mortuary. Flowers in Mil’s name may be sent to the StoneCreek staff, or you can make a donation to the charity of your choice. There will be no services at this time, though you may send condolences via Drinkwinemortuary.com. A celebration of Mil’s life with family and friends will be held at a later date, due to the current pandemic.
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