Corazon Millano Noyes, 74

Noyes, Corazon Millano, age 74 of Prior Lake, passed away peacefully at home on Tuesday, September 6th with her family by her side.

A visitation will take place on Thursday, September 22nd at Ballard-Sunder Funeral Home, 4565 Pleasant St. SE, Prior Lake from 4-8 PM. A Mass of Christian Burial will be held on Friday, September 23rd at 11 AM at the Church of St. Michael, 16400 Duluth Ave SE, Prior Lake with visitation at church one hour prior. Father Tom Walker will preside. Interment Spring Lake Cemetery.

Livestreaming will be available at St. Michael Catholic Church’s website and by clicking on the “Mass and Services” tab.

Corazon Millano Noyes was born to Flocerfina and Cirilo Millano, survivors of the Imperial Japanese invasion into the Philippines during World War II. She grew up running barefoot races along the beaches of the Pacific Ocean. It was in the jungles of Leyte that she developed a lifelong fear of snakes. It was as a child that she lost her sister Maria Delia.

While attending the Divine Word University of Tacloban, her father and uncle were assassinated for organizing tenant farmers. Cora was the one that washed her father’s body for the funeral. Subsequently she gave up school and sustained the family after her mother’s mental breakdown. Later she returned to school and graduated with a degree in commerce.

A lover of the written word, she met David Noyes, a farm boy from Canby, Minnesota, through a penpal service. After 14 months of writing letters to each other, David proposed to her over the telephone. She accepted on the condition that they get married in the Philippines. They did so on September 23rd, 1981. 

She gave birth to her son Karl after 25 hours of labor and two years later her daughter Princessita was born. She worked as a hearing aid technician for Starkey Laboratories for over 24 years and made many friends. She was also an Avon Lady and won numerous awards. 

After retirement she became a member of the South of the River Dance group and traveled the country dancing. She was president of the Barangay Pepita People’s Learning Center organization and opened 11 libraries in rural villages in the Philippines. She traveled to anti-war protests, went whitewater rafting, frequently read to her grandchildren and was a fan of Minnesota sports teams. 

In 2019 she was diagnosed with lung cancer and given four months to live. Instead with medical intervention and determination she lived three more years. In August of 2022, complications from lung cancer forced her to be hospitalized and eventually seek hospice care. She returned to her Prior Lake home to fulfill her last wish and there with her daughter and son by her side and the prayers of her loving husband she died peacefully.

Cora loved shoes, walking big dogs, shoveling snow, and building snowmen. She enjoyed music, wrote poetry and was a roadside photographer. She admired flowers and butterflies. Guests weren’t permitted to leave her household on an empty stomach, and she was happy to treat them to her Filipino cooking. For Cora, no one was an enemy and everyone was a potential friend. Known to her grandchildren as Lola, she loved lavishing them with hugs, kisses, and large pancakes. Despite the hardships of her life, she embraced joy and laughter. 

With her smile, generosity, and rare sense of flair she will forever be missed by her husband, David; son, Karl; daughter, Princessita (Casey) O’Brien; grandsons, Declan and Calvin O’Brien; and many other relatives and friends. 

Cora is preceded in death by her mother, Flocerfina Polillo; father, Cirilo Millano; and sister, Maria Delia Millano; and her close friend Amparo Zupke, among others.

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