Nancy Phoebe Jane Dokken Mills, 88, died Friday, March 26, 2021 in her sleep, at home in Hanahan, SC, listening to “It Is Well With My Soul.”
Nancy was born in St. Paul Jan. 16, 1933.
Nancy was a loving mother, grandmother, great-grandmother, navy wife, and more.
She was a strong Christian, whose light shined on so many people. The Lord was a central part of her life, and every time she moved, she made sure to be active in helping the local body grow and mature. She ministered through singing in the choir, inviting people to church, helping with the prison ministry, and cooking meals.
She and her husband, Dusty, were missionaries in the US for YFC Lifeline Youth Homes. She lived all over the world with her husband and family.
Nancy was married to Marvin (Dusty) Lew Mills, LCDR US Navy (Ret.). He was in the navy for almost 28 years.
She was told she could not have children because of a car accident that shattered her spine, but she did not let her disability stop her from living life.
After much discussion with the doctor, she was told she could carry a child only if she was on bed rest, and she rose to the challenge.
After her first child’s birth, Nancy went on to adopt four more children, and, over time, foster-mothered 64 children.
Dusty preceded her in death in 1986. Nancy was also preceded in death by her infant daughter Kayoko, and 21-year-old son Tino. She was the last surviving child of Altha and Elmer Dokken of Cokato.
Nancy is survived by her three children Dolores Carveth (Rick), Ryoko Yaryan (Samuel), and Toshio Mills (Jo); eight grandchildren Ann Popik (Ray), Carol Carveth, Tommy Carveth (Brette), Caleb Yaryan (Julie), Barak Yaryan (Lauren), Adriel Yaryan, Jacqueline Mills, and Joy Mills; seven great-grandchildren Noah Carveth, Jude Yaryan, Nora Yaryan, Ezra Yaryan, Malachi Yaryan, Isaac Yaryan, and Selah Yaryan.
Those close to her would describe her as indomitable, loving, nurturing, and servant-hearted.
Nancy was “one tough cookie” who loved the Lord.
Memorial donations may be sent to:
Lowcountry Crisis Pregnancy Center - www.secure.egsnetwork.com/donate
Cokato Museum -www.cokatomuseum.org
Campus Outreach - www.campusoutreach.org
The Swanson-Peterson Funeral Home and Cremation Service is assisting the family.