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Millicent “Millie” Melaver, 90, of Savannah, Georgia, died Monday morning, November 30, 2020, at her home.

She was born in Brooklyn, New York, in 1930 and moved with her family to Savannah in 1940. After graduating from Savannah High School, she attended Armstrong State College for one year and then attended and graduated from The University of Pennsylvania. After college she taught English at Savannah High School as well as in the Miami area, but spent most of her life working in the family grocery store business, M&M Food Store, later known as M&M Supermarkets, where she directed front-end management of the store and later ran the advertising department and helped grow the business into a regional chain of 14 grocery stores employing over 750 people.

Beyond being an accomplished businesswoman, she was deeply involved in community affairs and was active in and served on the boards of many cultural and civic organizations, including the Savannah Cultural Affairs Committee, Jewish Educational Loan Fund, Savannah Jewish Council, Congregation Agudath Achim, The United Way, and the Melaver Family Scholarship at Armstrong Atlantic State University. She served as President of the Savannah Jewish Federation, Chair of the Foundation on the Board of St. Joseph’s/Candler Hospital, Chairman of the Board of Directors of Goodwill Industries, and Vice President of Development and Vice President of Marketing for the Savannah Symphony Orchestra. As a dear friend put it, “if there was a need in Savannah, Millie was there to serve it; her accomplishments and the causes she championed will serve Savannah for generations to come.”

Millie was an avid traveler, starting with a tour of Western Europe in the early 1950s.  Her travels took her all over the country and the world.

A devoted daughter, sister, niece, friend, aunt, great-aunt, and honorary mother/aunt to many, she is survived by Martin Melaver and his children Dana and Alon, Tovah Melaver and Edison Wolf and their daughter Aliyah, Elle Melaver and her son Ian, and Nirit Avnimelech.

A private graveside funeral service was held on December 2nd at Bonaventure Cemetery and was simultaneously streamed online.

Remembrances: Donations in her memory would be welcome at any of the organizations with which she was involved.

You are invited to view the funeral service of Millie Melaver by clicking here. 

Online Condolences

  1. Linda Lair Futrell says:

    She was a wonderful person, a real Savannah Lady. We will always remember her quick wit, and her M&M grocery business. She made all customers welcome.
    Deepest Sympathies to your family.
    RIP Millie

  2. Ellen Byck says:

    My condolences to the family. SVannah lost a good friend

  3. Carolyn Milton, Handle With Loving Care says:

    To the Family of Millicent Melaver,

    Please accept our heartfelt condolences at this difficult time. Ms. Millie was kind of heart and generous of spirit. Everyone at HWLC admired and loved her. May your family cherish the warmest memories that you all share forever. Your family will always have our support, love and friendship.

    “O God, You have been our refuge in every generation. Before the mountains came into being, before you brought forth the earth and the world, from eternity to eternity. You are God.” Psalm 90.

    With Our Deepest Condolences,
    Carolyn Milton and the Staff of Handle With Loving Care

  4. Butch Lamb says:

    May you rest in,peace Millie! She was a brilliant business woman who I learned much from her!

  5. Dion Hall says:

    Warmest sympathies to the Melaver family. Millie was a very sharp businesswoman, and played a large part in my career development.

  6. Kathy Diane jarrell boutwell says:

    I was hired by millicent melaver as as cashier then worked in the computer room then as assistant payroll clerk then payroll clerk then insurance clerk payroll supervisor. I learned a lot from this hard working lady. We stuffed many a paycheck together for all the employees. I appreciated the opportunities to advance at m and m supermarkets. She knew how to throw a nice wine and cheese party and I will always remember her fondly.

  7. Miriam Center says:

    She touched my heart in a special way

  8. Timothy Smith says:

    Another fantastic lady gone! Millie was such a wonderful woman. I remember her so well. She was not only my Daddy’s (George Smith) boss (along with Nortin), but a wonderful family friend. I remember staying with her and Mrs. Annie after Hurricane David in 1979 because they had power and I could do my schoolwork. Millie was a blessing! I remember when she went into the Penn Ave. store…word traveled fast…”Ms. Millie is in the store.” Great memories. The whole Melaver family was very dear to us.

  9. Louise Phelps says:

    So sorry to hear if Millie’s passing. She was a wonderful neighbor for years on Troop Square. A true Southern lady, who was very proud of her family.
    May she rest in peace, and may her memory be a blessing.

  10. Millicent Melaver says:

    Managed M & M Skidaway for 3 years. I enjoyed her input and she challenged me to be the best I could. I learned a lot from her management style. So sorry to hear about her passing.

  11. Wayne brookshire says:

    What a lady I managed the skidaway store for a period of time found her to be challenging and a good business woman she was often fun to be around I personally missed her enthusiasm and dedication so sorry for her family Rest In Peace.

  12. Susan Smith says:

    I worked with Millie for about 9 years as the Advertising Manager for M & M Super Markets. She taught me so much and I still think of her often. She was a true mentor and friend. My sympathies are with her family. She will be truly missed.

  13. M.Marva Pray says:

    So very sorry of hearing the passing of Millie Melaver! She was a special lady! My condolences to the Melaver family and dear friends

  14. Joanne Lair says:

    So sorry to hear of Miss Millies passing.Thoughts and prayers to her family to her family and friends.She was quite a savvy businessusiness women. She taught me a lot, she was a friend and a boss.She loved her family, and was very active in the JEA.My deepest sympathy to all.

  15. Patricia T Anderson says:

    I enjoyed working with Miss Millie @ Penn. Ave. After Kroger bought M& M I.was tranfer to the Habersham St. store. Miss Mille would come in & get me to ring her up. She said that I was the only one who knew what to do. I will miss her. My prayers & thoughts go out to the family.

  16. Phoenicia Miracle says:

    Millie loved music. She was a faithful supporter of the performing arts and an annual Festival Friend. So sorry to hear of her passing.

  17. Audrey Brinson Mack says:

    Ms. Millie you were a strong, fair, and beautiful person to work for. My years working at M & M Supermarkets were some of the best and interesting years of my life. Thank you for being you. ♥️

  18. Ginger and Jerry Caplan says:

    The passing of an era of community service, professional and business acuity, and deep friendship to many. She will be missed, but not forgotten.

  19. Regina Hall Mills ( Employee ) Handle With Loving Care says:

    From my heart, a part of us is now missing. To the family you have my sympathy, Miss Millie was an awesome lady. Rest In Peace our love.

  20. Steve Charnovitz says:

    Millie led and inspired by her creativity, energy, warmth and generosity of spirit. Savannah cherishes her memory. Sally and I extend our condolences to Martin and his family.

  21. Robert Pena says:

    My sincere condolences go out to the Melaver family. God is closest to those with broken hearts. I was lucky enough to meet Miss Millie when I was working at the Savannah Symphony offices from 1993 to 2001. She was a great woman whom I will remember fondly.

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