Former Mich. first lady Helen Milliken dies at 89

  • November 17, 2012

TRAVERSE CITY, Mich. (AP) – Helen Wallbank Milliken, Michigan’s longest-serving first lady and a staunch supporter of women’s rights and environment issues, has died. She was 89.

Son William Milliken Jr. says she died Friday morning. Early in her husband’s political career, Milliken dutifully played the role of unassuming, supportive spouse. But she evolved into an outspoken advocate of issues close to her heart during a record 14 years as first lady.

She vigorously campaigned for abortion rights and the ill-fated Equal Rights Amendment. She also drew the wrath of the outdoor advertising industry when she criticized highway billboards shortly after her husband, Republican William Milliken, became governor in 1969.

At her urging, her husband hiked the Pigeon River State Forest, where he later limited development.


blog comments powered by Disqus

HIV-positive doctor says his dog saved his life

Weather, flights aid post-Thanksgiving travel efforts

Hull-aballoo: New Navy destroyer’s seaworthiness questioned

In DC, public housing tenants forced out, then homes flipped

Carson after tour: Refugees don’t want to come to U.S.

Sanders wants ‘single-payer’ plan

Carolina to collect web sales taxes

Protect yourself online during the holidays

Trump brags about his lead

Online shopping reduces Black Friday turnout