Marilyn Miller Mitchell, 86, of Columbia passed away peacefully Tuesday, Aug. 13, 2019, in Cincinnati, Ohio.

A memorial service will take place at 10 a.m. Saturday, Sept. 28, 2019, at Memorial Funeral Home, and burial will follow in Memorial Park Cemetery.

Marilyn was born Aug. 24, 1932, in St. Paul, Minnesota, to Roy and Irene Miller, and they preceded her in death. She spent the majority of her youth in Cleveland, Ohio.

Stephens College brought her to Columbia, Missouri, where she received her degree, perfected her equestrian skills and met the love of her life, Dr. Frank Mitchell Jr. They married Aug. 8, 1953, and he preceded in death in 2014.

Medical training, residency and the Army would take the couple to Baltimore, Nashville and Germany. Eventually, they returned to Columbia to raise their three sons.

The return to Missouri allowed Marilyn to further her academic studies at the University of Missouri, where she received her bachelor’s and master’s in library and information science.

Marilyn also returned to the saddle with her stallion Dixie Aristocrat. In the mid-1960s, they earned blue ribbons at events across the Midwest. In 1966, at the prestigious American Royal, the pair won first place in the amateur ladies five-gaited event.

Marilyn loved her three sons and her grandchildren and being a mother and grandmother to them.

Marilyn had a love for all animals, nature, travel, the stock market and books. She was an avid reader who balanced an impeccable formal library of classics with a teetering stack of “next reads” nearby.

Her love of nature and travel included daily walks in her yard, nurturing close to 1,300 tulips at her home, float trips in southern Missouri and numerous travels to Alaska, other parts of the U.S. and across Europe.

Survivors include her three sons, Dr. Frank (Tres) Mitchell III and his wife, Diana, of Scottsdale, Arizona, Brian Mitchell and his wife, Karla, of Cincinnati, Ohio, and Richard Mitchell of Atlanta, Georgia; nine grandchildren; six great-grandchildren; and a brother, Don Miller, of Los Angeles, California.

Those who wish to remember Marilyn in a special way may make gifts in her memory to the Marilyn Mitchell Gift Fund: Frank L. Mitchell Jr., MD Trauma Center, University of Missouri — Division of Acute Care Surgery, One Hospital Drive, DC024.00, Columbia, MO 65212.

Online condolences may be made at

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