Detroit cycling loses an advocate, a coach, and a friend

Woody Miller volunteering at the 2008 Tour-de-Troit

We recently received some terribly sad news. Detroit cyclist Woody Miller passed away on Saturday.

Here’s more information from fellow cyclist Reg Modlin:

I discovered yesterday evening by accident, that Woody Miller passed away in Seattle on Saturday [July 17, 2010]. From what I can piece together, Woody had cancer. He apparently had it for a while and fought it. I saw and spoke with Woody in early June and he did not mention it.

However, by mid to late June it had spread, putting Woody in hospital for surgery. Following that he went to Seattle to continue chemo treatment and to be with his son, David, his daughter in law and grandson. Apparently, the cancer spread to his liver and Woody passed last Saturday.

According to his family, his remains will be cremated in Seattle and a memorial service will be held in Detroit at a later date.

Woody will be remembered by a great many people in the Detroit area. Many cyclists rode with Woody over the past twenty years or so, on rides all over the metro area and Canada. We trained for racing and high speed riding on Belle Isle, and made many, memorable Sunday rides from Dearborn to Ann Arbor, and from Windsor to Colchester (Canada).

Woody mentored many young riders even up through this year, and I recall him riding through the winter this past year to his workplace at the downtown Bolle YMCA. Woody also coordinated the rider support for a number of years in the annual Tour de Troit.

Another great Detroit cyclist will be missed, but will never be forgotten in the peleton.

Woody was an active and dedicated bicycle advocate both on and off the road.?He was at city council to help repeal Detroit’s onerous bicycle registration ordinance and pass the non-motorized transportation plan.

And we never saw him not wearing cycling clothes. In fact we teased him for addressing city council in Lycra once. He made no apologies and said, “Hey, I’m a cyclist and this is what I wear.”

As of now, the memorial to Woody will be occurring at Belle Isle on August 14th. As more details become available, we’ll post them.

And in spirit, he will certainly be on the Tour de Troit again this September.

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3 Responses to “Detroit cycling loses an advocate, a coach, and a friend”

  1. Trevor Says:

    I met Woody by chance a couple of years ago when I rode downtown. I stopped in Campus Martius and was adjusting the brakes when Woody came up and asked if I needed any assistance with my bike. We ended up talking for a little bit and rode together for about 15 minutes or so just around the riverfront. He was such a genuine, nice person.

    My thoughts are with his family.

  2. Dave Says:

    This is sad news. I met Woody a few years ago, but at the time I didn’t realize who he was or how big an advocate he was in the cycling community. It wasn’t until after I had met him that I started to hear more about him from others. He will be missed.

  3. Christopher Beck Says:

    I knew Woody in the 1980’s when we were both leading tours of the downtown areas for Detroit Parks and Rec. We have been on a number of rides together over the years including a couple from Detroit to Amherstburg. I would run into him now and then on Belle Isle, and I will miss that. I mention Woody on the bikes page of my website, Detroit won’t be the same without Woody.

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