Esther Powers Miller
April 16, 1929 – November 29, 2017
Esther Powers Miller passed away peacefully on November 29 at 2:00 a.m. Her husband, K. Ward Miller was by her side at this time.
Esther was born on April 16, 1929 in Peninsula, Ohio, daughter of John Henry and Hazel Blanche (Appleton) Scobie. She attended the
Kansas City Art Institute, Missouri, in 1950 and Indiana University, South Bend, in 1967. She moved to Culver in 1953 with her first
husband, E. Duane Powers, with whom she had four children.
Esther’s career was multi-faceted and included a successful real estate business, Powers Realty, from 1967-1976 in Culver, Indiana.
She also worked as an appraiser in South Bend, Culver, and Plymouth from 1978-1990. However, her real passion was her art work.
Esther was a talented professional watercolorist and the owner of the Painter & Poet Gallery in Culver, Indiana. Her paintings grace
many hundreds of homes around the country.
Esther began drawing before she learned to write or read. After completing high school, she married and attended Kansas City Art
Institute for two years before pausing to raise four children. However, she never stopped painting, and her family has fond memories of
Esther setting up her easel and painting whenever she had a chance. After a divorce in her thirties, Esther began her highly successful
real estate business, got involved in town politics most notably as the first woman president of the Town Board, and she emerged as an
assertive and influential presence in Culver.
Esther was extremely curious and she displayed this through her passion for reading from her early childhood up to her last year of life.
She absorbed a wide array of subjects for over 80 years, and in her last few years, even with deteriorating eyesight due to glaucoma and
other issues, she continued to listen to audiobooks. Although never ostentatious, this explains how she was so knowledgeable about a
wide range of topics. This legacy continues in her children who are also avid readers.
In 1989, Esther launched her art career with her incredible energy and focus. She, and her husband, K. Ward Miller, combined forces to
create their business, The Painter and the Poet. They traveled to juried art shows where Esther sold paintings and swapped ideas with
other artists. Eventually, they opened their own gallery in their Culver home. Esther’s paintings have ranged from local landmarks such as
the Vandalia Train Depot to more regional scenes including Notre Dame and Michigan Lighthouses.
In addition to being a gifted artist, Esther was a devoted mother, wife, and friend to many people. Her upbeat attitude, sense of humor,
and resilience will be deeply missed by her entire family. She is survived by her husband of 37 years, K. Ward Miller and children:
Terrance Powers, Michael Powers, Susan Powers, and Jennifer Powers, and 7 grandchildren. She is also survived by her three step-
children: Scott Miller, Susanne Hunt, and Michelle Barratt.
Per her wishes, Esther will not have funeral services and instead has asked her children to arrange a Celebration of Life at a time when
family and friends can gather to share good memories and happy times with Esther. The time for this event is yet to be determined.
Esther Powers Miller made this world a more beautiful place. Her legacy will live on in the hearts of her loved ones and in her art.