HARVEY, Mich. (WJMN) – Sonja Hiller has lived in the Upper Peninsula since 2005. She’s been making an impact on her community ever since. That’s why her friend, Leafa Miller nominated her for our Remarkable Women campaign.
“Just watching her is a good example to other people. She’s always doing something for somebody else so it encourages people to do the same thing,” said Miller.
Miller said that Sonja Hiller is always willing to help out. From sanitizing the church pews, coordinating a community Thanksgiving dinner, or inviting children in to find Christmas gifts for their family, anything she’s able to do, she does.
“In September, I had a lot of pain. For like six weeks I was back and forth from the ER several times. She came out to the house and checked on me, gave me massages, made sure I had meals. I told her I didn’t need them but she did it anyway. She was always checking on me making sure I did eat this or I didn’t eat this. I had to be very careful what I ate so she helped me a lot,” said Miller.
Sonja’s passion for serving was part of her career. She is a retired nurse, and knows how to care for others.
“If I can brighten someone’s day just a little. If I know someone needs a few groceries and I can do it, I’ll go to town and I’ll get them. If they need help doing something at their house and I can do, I’ll be there. To let them know that someone does care,” said Hiller.
Hiller admits she has faced her share of challenges.
“We’ve gone through a lot of trials. A lot of challenges as I put it since we’ve been here. My husband was diagnosed with lung cancer three years ago. That was a trying time. We went through chemo and radiation. We’re now in remission. Then he developed Parkinson’s. He served in Vietnam and was involved in the Agent Orange. They think that’s what transpired,” said Hiller.
She is an active member of Harvey Baptist Church. “The people here at the church. I don’t consider them just church members. They’re family. I don’t think there’s anybody at this church that I couldn’t call and say could you help me?
While her husband was undergoing treatment, her church family came to the rescue.
“We had all this wood to cut to get ready for the winter. All the men and all the ladies showed up at my house. We had several log splitters going. The men was cutting. The other men was splitting. The ladies was hauling and stacking. We did five cords in one day. I couldn’t be blessed more.”