Dennis Miller, co-owner of iconic Miller’s Bar, dies at 74

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Dennis Miller — longtime co-owner of Dearborn’s iconic Miller’s Bar, beloved by burger fans in metro Detroit and beyond — died Thursday, according to a family post on the Miller’s Bar Facebook page. He was 74 years old.

According to the Detroit News, Miller died of cancer.

“He will be missed by all of us more than words can express,” wrote his wife, Dorene Miller, and brother Mark Miller. Miller’s Bar, according to the post, will be closed as usual on Sunday.

The bar, according to the message, will close for the funeral service on Monday and reopen on Tuesday, the message said. and customers who really care about you. We appreciate your business and will continue to carry on the Miller tradition of serving our award-winning burgers,” the family wrote.

In business since 1941, Miller’s is known for its famous juicy no-frills round burgers, topped with or without cheese and served on a white bun wrapped in waxed paper. Its burgers are 7 ounces and come with optional pickles and onions.

Miller’s Bar went up for sale a year ago.

The bar’s burgers have received numerous accolades both locally and nationally. It is also known as a “cash only” place where you pay according to the honor system. A waiter takes your order and you pay at the bar telling the bartender what you ordered. “We use the honor system here. Just tell us what you had,” according to the menu on its website.

Miller’s uncle first opened the bar in 1941, Miller told the Free Press in 2008. His father, Russell Miller, “made it what it is,” Miller recounted at the time.

Miller started working there doing “porter work — janitorial stuff — in the ninth grade and was a bartender in the 12th grade,” he told the Free Press. He and his brother then took over the management of the family hamburger bar, a well-known place for Ford employees and families with their children.

Miller was featured in a September 2021 CBS News segment on the global semiconductor shortage and its impact on the auto industry and local businesses. Miller estimated, according to the segment, that 60% of his business is related to the automotive industry and that reduced traffic from Ford employees working remotely has curtailed his business. is likely reduced due to workers working from home.

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Arrangements are being handled by Howe Peterson Funeral Home in Dearborn, according to the Facebook post.

In addition to his wife and brother, Miller is survived by another brother, Scott Miller. He was predeceased by his parents, Russell and Ethel Miller; one sister, Wendy Bardelli; and his brother Guy Miller.

Visitation for Miller will be Sunday from 2 to 7 p.m. at the funeral home’s Dearborn Chapel. The funeral service is scheduled for 10 a.m. Monday at the chapel.

Contact Susan Selasky, Detroit Free Press food editor, and send food and restaurant news to: [email protected] Follow @SusanMariecooks on Twitter.

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