April 5, 1916 – April 1, 2013
On this Easter morning, his much beloved bride reminded Norman that they had been married for 72 years, having taken their vows to love and honor each other on Easter, 1941. The Very Rev. Norman Randall Milbank’s body died the next day, April 1st, while his spirit joined the multitude in heaven who are praising God. Born April 5, 1916, on a bleak ranch in an isolated area of Alberta, Canada, Norm immigrated as a youngster with his family to Spokane, Washington. He earned a BA in Business from the University of Washington. While at UW, he had the high honor of being on the rowing crew which won several National Championships (Go Huskies!). It was also at UW that he met Matilda, his precious Tillie Ann.
Immediately following their wedding, the couple relocated to San Francisco where Norm had a full career in business, including the role of Bursar at Stanford. An outgoing and cordial yet truly humble man, he was liked by everyone he met. Everyone. He served in the Navy as a Lt. Cmdr. in both WWII and the Korean conflict. The twin sons arrived first (Patrick and Michael), then a daughter (Marni), and then another son (Miles). His family was always his greatest earthly treasure. He also was a faithful follower of the SJ Sharks and SF 49ers. Family members learned not to call during game times!
Norm was always active in the church, where he served as a Sunday school teacher and layreader for worship services. Subsequently called to lead a new church, Rev. Milbank studied for full-time ministry and was ordained as an Anglican priest. He and others founded St. Paul’s Anglican Church in Los Altos where he served actively until 2010. With a passion for children to be well educated, including spiritual realities, he also founded Canterbury Christian School on site. School children and church parishioners were a source of great joy to him. The children loved to run up to him and give him a big hug. He always had time to listen to the children. At graduation, students would frequently mention how much they appreciated his hugs and positive spirit.
Having lived through difficult depression days, he was always personally frugal while generous to those around him. He never bought things for himself (other than the prized See’s dark chocolate butter chews) but was more concerned with the wellbeing of others. His pleasure was in his work with the church and the school. He was a great believer in taking personal responsibility, living within his means, and showed by example what we are to do for others. He modeled a life of honoring people individually, and loving his country deeply. He cherished his wife, children, twelve grandchildren, and fourteen great-grandchildren. We will miss his encouraging spirit.
Although he received numerous plaques and honors over the years, his highest honor was that of serving the Lord Jesus. Whether in good times or tough ones, he believed without a doubt that, “all things work together for good to those who love God and are the called according to His purpose” (Rom. 8:28).
The funeral service was April 13, at St. Paul’s Anglican Church, 101 N. El Monte Ave., Los Altos. In lieu of flowers, the family asked that any donations be directed to St. Paul’s Anglican Church and/or Canterbury Christian School at the address above. Spangler Mortuary assisted the family. Well done, faithful servant. Enter your eternal rest.