A Warm Welcome to Millie Geetter !

I was deeply moved by what Millie Geetter said to me as we were ending our conversation about her life. She said that what’s really important for her now is to live as good a life as she can manage, a healthy life with a strong sense of morality, to look after our planet, to keep herself vital, and to do no harm. She speaks for many of us.

Millie was born on a farm in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, attended school in Toronto, was employed as a social worker in Montreal, and completed a graduate degree in the School of Social Work at Boston University. Although her mother died when she was only four, she speaks of being raised by a fabulous stepmother.

Living in Boston was deeply stimulating to her. She became immersed in the arts and worked at Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston, where she met and married her husband, Albert, who was then a resident in surgery.

After the couple had three small children, Dr. Geetter was drafted into the Army during the Vietnam War. Millie, with Joshua, Adam and Thora, moved into the home of her in-laws, whom she credits as being the ultimate grandparents. It was a serious time for the family since it was during the TET offensive and, in an effort to capture surgeons for their own troops, the communists overran the hospital where her husband was working. He managed to escape, but when he returned from Vietnam, he was traumatized by the war and deeply offended by the hypocrisy of the government’s reasons why we were in the war.

Millie spent many years working on social justice issues, including school integration in Hartford, Connecticut, where she participated in programs to encourage inclusion. After her children were grown, Millie returned to Boston to refresh her degree and to work again in the hospital.

Millie is a member of the Harrisonburg Unitarian Universalists. Her daughter, Thora, owns and operates the “Teeny Tiny Spice Company” locally – an online company which sells pure spices from various parts of the world. --Martha Merz