A Mass of Christian Burial will be at 11:00 AM, Thursday, September 22, 2022 at St. Mary of Mt. Carmel Catholic Church in Long Prairie for Sheila Anne Francis Milner who passed away peacefully surrounded by family on September 14, 2022 at the Long Prairie Care Center. Visitation will be from 4:00-7:00 PM on Wednesday, September 21 at the Williams Dingmann Family Funeral Homes, Stein Chapel in Long Prairie. The parish women will pray the Rosary at 3:45 at the funeral home. Visitation will continue one hour prior to services at the church on Thursday.
She was born on November 26, 1935 to Myles J. and Anne (Vollrath) Milner in Breckenridge, Minnesota. She was the 2000th baby born at St. Francis Hospital. Sheila attended her first two years of high school in Breckenridge, but then went to St. Benedict‘s High School in St. Joseph. After graduating, she entered the convent of the order of St. Benedict. Upon completing her training, including a master’s degree in education from the College of St. Benedict, she taught at St John’s/ St. Andrews School in Greenwald and Christ the King School in Browerville before coming to Long Prairie. She taught 5th grade at St. Mary of Mt. Carmel School for many years and also served as principal.
After she left the convent, she continued to teach in Catholic schools, including Our Lady of Lourdes, Little Falls and Sacred Heart, Sauk Rapids. She served as the choir director and organist at St. Mary of Mount Carmel Catholic Church until 2015. After 35 years of teaching, she made a career change and worked for the US Postal Service in Long Prairie and Waite Park until she retired in 2000.
While at St. Mary’s, she was befriended by the Mechels family. Both Shari and Randy Mechels were her students and as the years passed, she became their surrogate mother- she considered Shari and Randy her kids. Sheila was part of the Mechels family. She enjoyed spending time outdoors with them hunting and fishing. She was very proud of the fact that she once bagged an 8-point buck.
In her later years, she enjoyed travel, gardening, and bowling. She was an avid reader. Her kindness and love, as well as her beautiful smile will be missed.
She was preceded in death by her parents; brothers John F. Schmitt, Anthony W. Schmitt, James W. Milner, and Edward H. Milner; and sisters Magdalyn (Schmitt) Hesprich and Kathryn (Schmitt) Thomas.
She is survived by her brother Myles J. Milner Jr. of Kent, WA, her sister Mary Ellen Milner Otis of St. Paul, numerous nieces and nephews, and her dearest friend Lois Mechels.