ForeverMissed
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This memorial website was created in memory of our loved one, David Mills, 71, born on January 25, 1946 and passed away on September 7, 2017. We will remember him forever.

Services are schedule for Saturday, October 21, 2017.  All of David's family and friends are welcomed to attend.  A graveside service beginning at 10AM will be held at Holy Family Catholic Cemetery in rural Peosta, IA.  The cemetery is located just across the road to the south of New Melleray Abbey.  A catered reception will follow from noon to 4PM at Lord of Life Lutheran Church located at 2899 Hales Mill Road in Asbury, IA.

   
  

January 25
January 25
Happy birthday up there. Have some graham cracker pie! ❤️❤️❤️
September 7, 2023
September 7, 2023
We missed you at the Heer family reunion. Love you, Em
September 7, 2023
September 7, 2023
Another year of missing you, having great memories too. ❤️
September 7, 2022
September 7, 2022
Thinking about all the fun times I had working with David in New York. I miss him and the way the city was then. Sadly both are gone.
September 7, 2022
September 7, 2022
I thought of David just a few days ago, after moving into a new home. While unpacking, I came across the altar boy candle-lighter that we found at the antique shop in Soho (and I wanted as a reminder of my altar boy years at Saint Anthony's in Dubuque). It brought back wonderful memories of visits with David during my year in New York (1999-2000). I miss his company and his sense of humor. He will always be remembered. 
September 7, 2022
September 7, 2022
Miss you Love you I think about you often remembering the good times.
September 7, 2022
September 7, 2022
The five years passed quickly. Thinking of you today and often and always. OXOXOXOOX  
January 25, 2022
January 25, 2022
Miss you David!!! Think all time about you when I see a beautiful interior or work of art. ❤️
January 25, 2022
January 25, 2022
Happy Birthday David miss you and often think of funny things you use to say.Love you!
January 25, 2022
January 25, 2022
Thinking about you on your birthday today and miss you. Love, Em
January 25, 2022
January 25, 2022
Happy birthday. Love you and miss you.
September 12, 2020
September 12, 2020
Thinking of you today and always. Say hello to Ann, Joe and everyone else. And feel free to stop by anytime. Love.
September 11, 2020
September 11, 2020
3 years I think of you so often and how richer my life has been because of you miss you love you   Victoria
November 6, 2019
November 6, 2019
Just dropped by to say hello. Love. XOXOXO
September 9, 2019
September 9, 2019
Two years without you. So many more years of fond memories. I miss you and am happy we shared those times. XOXOXO
September 8, 2019
September 8, 2019
Two years seems to have gone by very quickly think of you often miss you♥️
January 26, 2019
January 26, 2019
Happy birthday David love you miss you think of you and feel your presence often love Victoria
September 9, 2018
September 9, 2018
Hard to believe it's been a year sad I think of you a lot Love You Victoria
September 7, 2018
September 7, 2018
It's been one year since you left us. Funny how it went by so fast for me, but for you it's an eternity. Thanks for watching over me this last year and for listening. Love and miss you.
January 25, 2018
January 25, 2018
Happy Birthday David. Sending love to you from San Francisco.
September 17, 2017
September 17, 2017
David was my cousin. The stars aligned somehow and I was born on his 15th birthday. I thus had the great fortune of his being chosen as my godfather. I was too young to know and appreciate him when he lived in Dubuque. Throughout my childhood, I would receive in the mail from New York really cool gifts: a little cloth drawstring purse made in India, with tiny mirrors imbedded in the fabric, really cool earrings, a silver bookmark from Tiffany’s, heart shaped on the top with my name engraved on it.

I made my first trip to NYC in 1979, with David’s mom, my Aunt Ann. That was the start of my deeper appreciation and love for David. As a child, I looked forward to and treasured the gifts he sent. Henceforth, I realized that David himself was the biggest and best gift to be treasured.

After I moved out East after college, I was able to visit New York many times. David was always on top of my list of New York attractions. My daughter Marisa was also able to get to know, appreciate and love him. Walking around New York with him was delightful. He had so much knowledge of the architecture, art, and spaces of the city. I have such fond memories of going with him into the Metropolitan Museum of Art, Riverside Church, The Cathedral of Saint John the Divine. He was an awesome tour guide. So funny, and fun to be with. Marisa and I loved hearing his humorous stories of his early hippie days in New York. I loved when he told me about our Grandpa Heer, whom I was too young to know.

The “two David’s” apartment was a magnificent showcase of treasures. My daughter and I savored David’s telling us about some of them, including how, where and when he collected them. More times than not, we would leave the apartment with a little treasure he gifted…… once a string of “hippie” beads for Marisa, for me a shiny purple velvet-looking shirt, a little sleigh bell he found under the ground at Grandpa and Grandma’s Heer’s old house.

I am so fortunate to have had such a fabulous godfather and will miss him immensely.

My deepest sympathy to Bob, JoAnn, Emily, Dan, Tori and David Stypmann. 

Janet Heer
September 16, 2017
September 16, 2017
Dear Mills Family,

This is Melissa Heer, David and Nanette Heer's oldest daughter. I was so completely heartbroken when I heard about David's passing and wanted to share with you some stories about the special place he held in my heart.

I came to visit David's shop for the first time in Soho with my mother when I was still a teen. I was completely memorized by his exquisite, and carefully curated, collection of treasures from across the globe, all crammed into a tiny little boutique and apartment in New York. We sat in his living room and flipped through the art books on his coffee table. I told him I loved one of his velvet embroidered throw pillows and was delighted when he told me it was mine to keep!! That pillow came with me to college, and I still hold tight to it as one of my most cherished possessions.           

In my 20s, when I was in graduate school I moved to New York and tried to come by the shop and say hello whenever I was in the neighborhood. During this time, I was diagnosed with thyroid cancer, and when David heard he gave me a beautiful crucifix necklace that he had acquired on one of his many trips to Russia right before I went into surgery. I kept it with me in hospital and it gave me strength as I managed to trudge the road back to health.

I never really had a chance to directly thank David and let him know just how much these beautiful tokens meant to me, or what an impact he had on my life as a young person. The magic of the antique shop stuck with me through the years, and although I am just realizing it now, I am have no doubt that it helped fuel my love for architure, design and curation as I pursued my Doctorate in Art History.

So thank you to David for cultivating the beauty in the world, and truly transmitting this beauty to so many others. I will always remember his kind spirit, generous heart, and joie de vivre. My most sincere condolences to David Stypman, the Mills family, and all those who loved him. I have no doubt that the world is a more beautiful place because he was in it.

Sincerely,

Melissa Heer
September 15, 2017
September 15, 2017
David was the most unique and special friend...his humor, his curiosity, his artistic intelligence, his elegance...I am so grateful to have had the gift of knowing him.

Together we followed a dream to create a decorative arts business in Russia based on traditional Russian crafts. Full of wonder but having no command of the Russian language, we set forth. I learned how to say Russian numbers, he learned the words for colors, we both tried and usually failed with left and right, he learned the subway system, I mastered the alphabet and took a semester of Russian at Bertitz. I kept notes on everything....the things we did, the way we survived, the situations we found ourselves in, one crazier and more challenging than the other made for volumes. During our dozen or so trips we culled flea markets and decorative arts schools and networked with anyone we could speak to about where to find skilled craftsmen. From Stieglitz, a decorative arts school in St. Petersburg, to the Moscow Arbat and the flea markets, on overnight trains and very scary Aeroflot flights we found iron workers in Kiev, wood carvers in Tomsk,/Siberia, fine brass and tapestry artists at Stieglitz, painters and stone carvers in Moscow. We set up a temporary shop in Moscow, but as the days went by, it became clear that our time as entrepreneurs in Russia was over. We packed everything except a few things we could not part with and put them in a friends basement. We kept a very low profile, or as low as we could. We were told not to look American, but it was March and freezing cold. I had a full length mink coat and David had a black leather coat and cowboy boots and always his red cashmere scarf. It was hopeless. Still, I pocketed a chunk of unimproved amber and David sawed in half a treasured brass candlestick so he could get it out. We took a deep breath and proceeded through security with both our treasures.

And as I look around my home now, almost everything that I cherish was from our travels. The collection is all encompassing: a hand wrought long stemmed iron rose, a huge bronze hedgehog planter, porphyry marble vase, brass church bells, blue ceramic relief of the Tzar's family, delicate amber beads, purple marble cubes, a malachite sled a la Faberge, a lidded malachite box, bronze plaque of St George slaying the dragon, brass candle sticks, tapestry pillows, bronze statue of a borzoi, carved wooden frames and tables and a throne.

We got home and were desperate for a project. We refocused on my apartment- Doric columns from Long Island, a Gothic church window (so I could "hide behind it to kiss my boyfriend!") a full length mirror from "the old Bergdorfs" (so I could "check out my hem"), Moroccean stools, Durie rug, stained glass windows, Parisian bowl with turquoise colored roping around the edge, a curling stone, and mirrors - never too many - "they reflect the light." He had a design preference to squares and circles (they are not arbitrary) and rich fabrics, and architectural details and a lack of enthusiasm for wall paper but a love for mural painting which he did himself. And as over-decorated as my home became, there was always room for another find...a leather horse bridle, a brass lion head door knocker, a miniature brass tennis racket, the right brass cachepot.

Emelie asked me to write a Russian story...I could go on forever. 

Dasvidaniya, David, my dear friend. Rest In Peace.

Pinky
September 14, 2017
September 14, 2017
David was a tall elegant beautiful man. I don't think he was aware of his own beauty yet his life was totally devoted to beauty. My favorite times with David was when I would visit him in his small apt. in the west village. I would bring a bottle of wine and sit in his chair which was truly the only practical thing in his place, and feast my eyes on his creative genius. I would look at every nook and cranny butsting with Davids creations- nothing was left untouched. Sometimes I felt like Alice in Wonderland when he would serve me a cup of tea in the most beautiful China cup that he- and only he- had found in a flea market. A cracked mirror merely by its positioning had become a work of art. His small place was festooned with medieval arches, painted ceilings and columns- you felt you were in a castle and it was so special because it was Davids castle. When he spoke of colors he would say they are like words, they flow one into the other. He belonged to another time where Patrons and tPopes would have championed his work and maybe that's where he is right now- painting and carving. He had no interest in money or anything ordinary or practical and that was the beauty of this gorgeous man that we all loved. He loved Nicky the dog and of course his long time partner David, and of course he was so concerned in case David would discover that Nicky liked him best!. How sweet, thoughtful and caring but that's our David. I will miss him forever
September 14, 2017
September 14, 2017
David was a special treat to have as a cousin. I grew up in Dubuque with a distant image of his artistic talent and hip New York cosmopolitanism. It was only after I moved to the East Coast myself and was able to visit him regularly in Manhattan that I could fully appreciate his many gifts--which included a wicked sense of humor (that helped him conquer a health crisis back in 2001). He was a delightful guide to New York and I was always in awe of his talent and sophistication. A trip to Manhattan will never be the same without the chance to visit him. The Heer family was proud to call him one of our own! My thoughts and prayers are with Bob, JoAnn, Emily, Dan, Tori, their families, and David Stypmann.
September 13, 2017
September 13, 2017
JoAnn and family, I'm so sorry for your loss. David sounds like a gifted and remarkable person ... so talented and creative. I enjoyed reading about him and can only wish I had been on one of his marvelous walking tours. Heartfelt condolences.
September 13, 2017
September 13, 2017
I loved my brother very dearly.Some of the most interesting and exciting adventures were traveling and working with him on many of his projects.He was a very large part of my life.I have so many great memories.I will always feel close to David even in death.We will see each other again.Victoria
September 13, 2017
September 13, 2017
David Mills was a first cousin, his mother, my father were siblings.  He left Dubuque when I was quite young, but I was able to appreciate him and his talents from afar for many years.  Back in the late 1960's I believe, he painted a wonderful painting of a European village, donated it to our parish for a fundraiser, and my mother won it in a drawing.  It was treasured by my mom and our family for years, I believe my sister Janet, David's god daughter, has it now. David also made a Christmas crib out of wood, sticks, plaster, and gave it to my Mom, where she proudly displayed her Nativity set every year since. Also, I believe almost every member of my family has benefited from his tour expertise in NYC.  My mother, and David's mother Ann Mills regularly traveled to NYC together, also, with great stories of time with David.  He will be thought of often by the Heer Family, I am sure.......

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