From The Rev M Norden, of the Middlesbrough Hebrew Congregation:
The Middlesbrough Hebrew Congregation have suffered a grievous loss in the untimely death of their spiritual leader Rabbi L Miller, who has served them faithfully for 21 years.
On his shoulders Rabbi Miller carried the tremendous burden of his flock, to whose service he had dedicated his life.
His was the fate of a true prophet and inspired revealer of God’s message. Unswerving in his loyalty to the manifold calls of duty, inspired and animated by the holy ideals of Judaism, yet suffering setbacks, sometimes misjudged and often misunderstood, he selflessly and devotedly served his community.
He pursued his sacred calling until the very day when the illness, which must have taken root some time ago, suddenly struck him. Never before had he allowed his energy, devotion to duty and zeal in the communal cause to slacken.
In time Middlesbrough Jewry will realise the loss they have suffered through the passing of a great scholar, able preacher, staunch champion of traditional Judaism and an indefatigable and invaluable worker.
Beyond the boundaries of his own Congregation he was a zealous spokesman and a strong Ambassador for the Jewish cause among the non-Jewish citizens of Middlesbrough and District, who greatly admired his great learning, thereby fostering the good relationship existing between the Jewish community and their Christian neighbours.
From Messrs J Mark and S Hamburger, President and Treasurer respectively of the Stockton-on-Tees Hebrew Congregation:
The Stockton Jewish Community has heard with deep sorrow of the passing of Rabbi Miller of Middlesbrough. As the nearest small Jewish Congregation, we often had occasion to seek Rabbi Miller’s help and advice and it was always unstintingly given. We found his encouragement invaluable during many difficult times. Along with the other Teesside Communities, we mourn the loss of a great scholar, leader and gentleman.
Funeral of Rabbi Miller:
Almost the whole of the Middlesbrough community, the Mayor of Middlesbrough and several Church dignitaries, and a large number of sympathisers from surrounding communities, attended a service in the Middlesbrough Synagogue prior to the interment of the late Rabbi Miller. As leading members of the congregation slowly carried the coffin into the sacred building, the assembly stood in sad and respectful silence.
The Service was conducted by the Rev M Norden, assisted by Rev G Wulwik of Blackpool (a former Reader of the Congregation). In a moving eulogy, the Rev E Drukker of Newcastle paid tribute to the sincerity, conscientiousness and scholarship of Rabbi Miller, and to his devotion to duty. The Service concluded with the singing of Yigdal to the traditional High Festivals tune.
At the cemetery, further tributes to Rabbi Miller were paid by Rabbi N Shakovitsky (Rav of Gateshead), Rabbi L Gurwitz (Vice-Principal of the Gateshead Yeshiva), Rev G Wulwik, and Rabbi Dr A Willman (of West Hartlepool).
The funeral arrangements, which were carried out decorously and with dignity, were directed by Mr J Fishbein, President of the Middlesbrough Hebrew Congregation and Mr S Doberman, Chairman of the local Chevra Kadisha.
From the Middlesbrough Evening Gazette 18 June 1951:
Highly respected throughout the town by both Jewish and Christian people, Rabbi Miller, head of the Jewish religious community in Middlesbrough for the past 21 years, died in Middlesbrough General Hospital on Saturday, after a short illness.
Rabbi Miller, who was 56, was a Londoner by birth, and came to Middlesbrough from Hull. At all times he was devoted to the welfare of both Jewish and Christian people in the town.
The funeral service was held in the Synagogue in Park Road South.
It was the first occasion that this honour had been paid in the new Synagogue building and the service which preceded interment was attended by the Mayor (Ald B Ramsey), civic heads, and representatives of other denominations, including Roman Catholic, Church of England and Non-conformist.
The synagogue was crowded for the service, which was taken by the Rev M Norden, Rev S Turtledove, Rev G Wulwik (a former member of the Middlesbrough Jewish Rabbinate who came specially from Manchester) and the Rev E B A Drukker of Newcastle.
At the graveside, an oration was given by Dr Willman of Hartlepool and two Rabbis from Gateshead.
Later, an evening service was held at the Rabbi’s house, 91 Southfield Road, Middlesbrough.