By: Amy Wendt
THE VILLAGE REPORTER
Recently celebrating their 50th wedding anniversary, Randy and Roxie Miller’s journey serves as a testament to the remarkable power of young love that blossoms and flourishes over the years.
The Millers’ story began around 1970 when both were just 16 years old. Randy and his good friend and cousin, Marsha, were driving to Turnpike Travelers in Wauseon where Randy was going to jam with his garage band on a Saturday night.
As they made their way to the local teen hangout, the cousins encountered a vehicle on a back road with some familiar faces and both cars pulled over for a quick chat between friends and cousins.
Little did they know that this chance meeting would become the start of a remarkable connection between Randy and Roxie.
Shortly after their first encounter, Randy and Roxie went on their first double date and they watched the movie Love Story.
“It just snowballed from that,” remembered Roxie. “We just kept meeting different places and hanging out with Randy’s friends.”
Roxie, daughter of Dick and Dorthy Taylor, attended Hilltop High School and had a full schedule with cheerleading and other school activities.
Randy, the son of Howard and Lucinda Miller, attended Wauseon High School seventeen miles away and was also very active in athletics including football, basketball, and track.
Since the two attended different schools, the teens tried to see each other on weekends as often as they could, however, since they were both so busy with their many extra-curricular activities, it wasn’t always easy.
Nonetheless, after dating for two years, the couple knew they wanted to spend the rest of their lives together.
On January 13, 1973, at the age of 18, Randy Miller and Roxanna Clifton were married in Wauseon, Ohio.
The couple shared that during their first days as a married couple, they were flat “broke”. In fact, by their own admission, the couple didn’t have much of a plan beyond the wedding day.
“We didn’t even know where we were going to live when we got married. True story – we didn’t know.”
“The guys in my wedding pooled their money and they rented The Chalet over in Wauseon for us to live for the first month so we could try to figure things out,” Randy elaborated.
When reflecting on their decision to marry at a young age, Randy emphasized, “It worked for us because, from the very beginning, there was never a question about where we wanted to go.”
“It was a little scary at times but it all worked out,” added Roxie. “We were always in it together,” Randy finished.
Early in their marriage, Roxie explored various career paths, working in different factories. Meanwhile, Randy took on additional jobs alongside his full-time work to support their growing family.
The couple moved to West Unity and eventually, Randy landed a sales position with International Paper which allowed Roxie to stay at home full-time to raise their children, Carrie and Cory.
Roxie remembered practicality led the Millers to forego most extravagant vacations with their children when they were younger.
However, they were fortunate to have dear friends who had a cottage on Clear Lake. Year after year, the Millers were warmly invited to spend a week there, creating fond memories during their children’s early years.
“Their kids were like our kids, and our kids were like theirs,” added Randy.
“Those are awesome memories with the kids, just growing up with the whole group and their kids and spending time at the lake,” Roxy continued.
Friendship is incredibly important to the Millers and they have cherished their close circle of friends since their school days.
This group of about 10 couples raised their families together and provided unwavering support in both good times and in bad. In essence, this inner circle has become an extended family to Randy and Roxie.
These great friends also became traveling companions of the Millers over the years and they have traversed to many destinations across the United States and Canada.
Together, the friends also explored the Caribbean and U.S. Virgin Islands as well as kicked back and relaxed on many cruises.
With his travels, Randy has developed a love for scuba diving. He also enjoys golfing, hunting, fishing, and boating as time allows.
Roxie, on the other hand, a self-proclaimed “homebody” enjoys working in the yard but also looks forward to opportunities to join her husband in fishing or boating.
To stay healthy and active, the Millers spend many hours with nature by walking the trails of their woods.
Years ago, their love of the outdoors led them to explore a seemingly abandoned leg of the Norfolk Southern Railway property, also known as the Wabash Cannonball Trail, which is near their rural West Unity home.
When they first came across the trail, it was all but impassable, and in order to walk even a short distance, lopers were needed to clear brush.
Finding a new labor of love, the couple spent many hours clearing and mowing the path so they and others could enjoy the walking trail.
Shortly thereafter, Randy was approached by a gentleman from the Northwestern Ohio Rails to Trails Association who invited the couple to become officially involved with NORTA, the organization that owns portions of the Wabash Cannonball Trail running through Williams, Fulton, and Henry counties.
NORTA’s purpose is to promote the development and operation of those 32 miles of trail.
For over 12 years, the Millers have been active members of NORTA where Randy has served as Vice President on the Board of Trustees.
Randy and Roxie, along with many other volunteers, have been instrumental in helping the organization clear and develop the Williams County portion of the trail.
With a remarkable 50 years of togetherness, of course, the Millers have discovered a few key ingredients for a lasting and fulfilling marriage.
Staying busy and saying “yes” to new things has allowed their relationship to grow into what it is today.
They also encourage new couples to “do life with a network of friends and family” as it greatly enriched their experience and provided an unwavering support system.
While the Millers place a priority on spending time together as a couple, they also note that it is very important to encourage each other to nurture their own interests.
“We still do individual things and we think that’s important…you have to still be your own self,” noted Roxie.
“And we have to respect that and encourage it,” Randy said in agreement. Last but certainly not least, the Millers agree that it’s important to “Praise God and thank Him for all of your blessings.”
“Part of ‘US’ cannot be told as a story without the Church,” Randy noted. Both Randy and Roxie were brought up in Christian homes as children which carried them through to their adult years.
The couple shares that God has always been the absolute priority in the life they built together, and they firmly believe in serving and giving back.
Over the years they taught Sunday School together and served as youth sponsors for teens. They are now members of both New Hope Community Church in Bryan and Hope City Church in Sarasota Florida.
Since retirement, Randy and Roxie have found they are just as busy as they were in their younger years.
“When you’re young and super busy…it’s like you know that each day is a gift, but you kind of overlook it – you take it for granted,” noted Roxie.
She continued that since retirement, the couple has come to the realization that every day IS in fact, a gift.
“You just want to do everything you possibly can along with everything else that needs to be done,” Roxie finished.
While at home in Ohio, the Millers fill their days enjoying the outdoors in many shapes and forms from boating, fishing, riding in their convertible, and working in their woods or on the NORTA trail.
In addition to their primary residence, the Millers have found a second home in Sarasota, Florida, where their daughter, Carrie, also resides.
Roxie and Carrie are preparing to embark on a mission trip to the Dominican Republic in July, joining their fellow church members from Hope City Church in Florida.
The Millers continue to embrace the joy of traveling and are looking forward to a special adventure with their close-knit group of friends. This year, they have set their sights on Alaska.
Randy and Roxie’s journey together is a reflection of the power of young love, the spirit of adventure, and the strength to adapt to life’s changes.
From their early days as teenage sweethearts to celebrating 50 years of marriage, they have embraced every moment with enthusiasm and open hearts.
Amy can be reached at email@example.com
The post Randy & Roxie Miller Of Rural West Unity Celebrate Golden Anniversary first appeared on The Village Reporter.
Source: The Village Reporter