Muller, Russell Jay

Russell Jay Muller departed from this life on July 1, 2020 at Hartford Hospital after a short illness. He was predeceased by his beloved wife of 60 years, Lois Ellen Pfau. He was born in Hartford on December 15, 1929 to Kenneth S. Muller and Evaline Smith Muller. He is survived by his daughter Kimberly and son-in law, David Farrington of Old Saybrook, along with his dearest friend and partner, Julia Haverl of Andover, CT.

He will be greatly missed by his sister and her husband, Sandra and Sivert Jacobson of Wallingford, CT and his brother Douglas Muller, Sr. and his partner Frances Drake of Louisville, KY, his extended family of nieces, nephews and their children and grandchildren, along with his new family, Julia’s daughter Christina and her husband Frank Tamburro, and their children, Cecelia, Paul and Daniel of Andover, Connecticut and her son, Carl Haverl and his wife Susanna Blackwell of Aptos, California.

Big Russ started working at Pfau’s Hardware in 1945, when he answered a frantic call to help clear the store basement during a water main break in West Hartford Center. He never left the store, after marrying the boss’s youngest daughter and finally rising to the position of Manager, then to Vice President where he served in that capacity until 1998. He remained active in the business until 2011. Customers would queue in line to talk to him, his warmth, patience, and quiet assurance were what they needed as they wrestled with endless hardware problems. Even after his retirement, customers still would ask him for help when he stopped by to purchase hardware himself.

He served his country during the Korean War by serving in the Connecticut National Guard from 1950-1952, serving at the level of Sergeant First Class. He was stationed in Okinawa, Japan, working as a supply sergeant for his unit.

Russ was member of the Evening Star Lodge #101 AF and AM in Unionville, Connecticut for over 55 years. He served actively in the Lodge in many capacities over the years including being inducted as the Worshipful Master of the Lodge in January 1973. It was through his years in the Lodge that he developed many long-term friendships and he was so proud to be a Freemason.

Summers would find Russ at his second home in Southern Vermont, working on endless projects to keep it running as a rental property for the upcoming ski season. Every late afternoon would find him sitting on the deck reading and watching the sun set over Mount Snow. His attachment to the rural life was well known, his mother’s family were dairy farmers. After the death of his first wife, when he met Julia, he moved from his home of 61 years in Farmington, to live with her in Andover, fully embracing his new home and gardens, both flower and vegetable. He was a founding member and board member for several years of the Nutmeg State Orchid Society, orchids played a large part of his life. In his later years, Russ and Julie received awards for the displays that they set up at many award-winning displays at orchid shows throughout Connecticut and Massachusetts.
A memorial service to celebrate his life will be held on a future date. In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to the First Congregational Church, U.C.C., PO Box 55, Andover, CT, 06232.

Calling Hours

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Memorial Contribution

First Congregational Church, U.C.C., PO Box 55, Andover, CT, 06232. 

One Response to 'Muller, Russell Jay'

  1. Hal and Connie Farrington says:

    to the family of Russell MULLER We have known the family for over 30 years , Russ was a hard working man who loved his family and church
    . He was active in the community , church and helping the family . He served the country with the Ct Army National Guard , but never believed he was a Veteran serving during the Korean WAR . He was a Humble man that wanted to help everyone from his days at Pfau”‘s hardware and helping his daughter with her home . He loved his chateau in Vermont , and his orchids he raised . but we remember him from the family gatherings and dinners together . we will miss his smiling face . R I P soldier love Connie and Hal Farrington

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