Sheldon “Shel” Miller died unexpectedly on April 3 at his home in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. Shel was born in Shelburne VT in 1949. He earned a BA in Philosophy from the University of Vermont. He spent his early career as a carpenter and built a successful house building company.
In the late 1980’s, Shel sold his business, bought a sailboat and began his second career as a sailboat charter captain. For many years he ran charters from the east coast of Florida to the Bahamas. In 1993, he became an ASA certified sailing instructor and switched from charters to teaching others to sail.
In 2016 he purchased a large catamaran “KISS” which he chartered out. Shel was also an instructor with Blue Water Sailing School in Fort Lauderdale. After an absence of 20 years he rejoined Sailing Singles; and when not chartering or teaching, Shel took many SSSF members on sailing adventures during the short time he was with the club again.
A celebration of life was help at Flip Flops on October 19th attended by many members of Sailing Singles, who reminisced about their experiences sailing with Shel, and noted his love of teaching.
According to Shel’s wishes, his ashes were returned to nature, in the Green Mountains of Vermont and the Atlantic Ocean off Fort Lauderdale. On October 17th, 2017 a small fleet of SSSF vessels took Shel’s nephew and his wife Deb, and Shel’s close friend Dave Pyle out to sea for an 8 Bell burial at sea ceremony. Shel is survived by his sister Loreli Miller and several nephews, nieces and great nephews and great nieces.