Nancy Isphording MacMillan

June 7, 2021

CHARLOTTE – Nancy Page Isphording MacMillan died Monday, June 7, 2021, after a 7 ½ year journey with cancer.  She was born September 18, 1947, the daughter of Thomas Page Isphording and Helen Jeannette Isphording. 

Nancy graduated from Needham B. Broughton High School in 1965, and the following Fall was admitted to UNC Chapel Hill as one of the first 100 freshmen women ever admitted to the College of Arts and Science.  She graduated from UNC-CH, where she met her husband of 52 years, Douglas P. (“Dan”) MacMillan, in 1969 with a Bachelor of Arts in Education.  In 1996 she earned her Master of Education from UNC-Charlotte.  She also earned her National Board Certification for Professional Teaching Standards.  Nancy began her teaching career in the Alamance County School system while Dan was in law school.  After moving to Charlotte, she taught part time at Central Piedmont Community College before joining Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools full time.  She taught English for five years at Harding High School and finished her career of almost 30 years as an English Teacher at Providence High School, where some of her colleagues were among her closest friends.

Nancy’s favorite career consisted of being a wife, mother and grandmother.  She put everything she had into raising her two children, who along with their spouses, produced five grandchildren who she cherished and treasured.  She loved traveling, reading, walking, tutoring (especially her grandchildren) and most of all being with family and friends.  After retirement she enjoyed being a docent at the Mint Museum, where she learned a lot about art and met many wonderful friends.

Nancy is survived by her husband, Dan; children, Doug MacMillan and his wife, Kelly of Asheville, NC and Laurie Diman and her husband, Andy of Charlotte; grandchildren, Kathryn Cabell MacMillan, William Pierce Diman, Douglas Pierce MacMillan III, Alastair Grace MacMillan and Elizabeth Page Diman.  She is also survived by her sister, Patricia M. Burdge and her husband, Wes of Raleigh, NC and nephews, Derek J. Burdge and Samuel Page Burdge and niece, Katherine J.  Burdge.

The family would like to extend its heartfelt thanks to Drs. Kathryn Mileham, Earle Burgess, John Heinzerling and Milas Zvonimir and the wonderful staff at Levine Cancer Institute, Drs. Steven Kadiev and Benjamin Bringardner at Atrium Health, whose care and compassion extended Nancy’s life and gave us quality years we otherwise would not have had.  The family is also grateful to the many friends and neighbors who provided food, support and love during her entire journey, especially to Dan’s cousin, Mary MacMillan, who shuttled her back and forth to, and kept her company at, innumerable oncology appointments and treatments, and who always uplifted her spirits.

A memorial service will be held at 4:00 PM on Saturday, June 12, 2021 at St. John’s Episcopal Church, 1623 Carmel Road, Charlotte, NC.  The family will receive friends following the service in the Parish Hall.

In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to the American Lung Association, PO Box 756 Osceola WI 54020-0756 or Hospice & Palliative Care Charlotte Region, PO Box 470408, Charlotte, NC 28247.

Arrangements are in the care of Kenneth W. Poe Funeral & Cremation Service, 1321 Berkeley Ave., Charlotte, NC 28204; (704) 641-7606. Online condolences can be shared at www.kennethpoeservices.com.

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  • Vicki Ratliff

    Nancy was a warm, gracious lady. I will miss her. I appreciate all of Nancy’s good service in teaching hundreds of children through the years. My condolences to the family; you have lost a bright light.

  • Rick Poe

    Dan- Thinking of you and your family. Enjoyed getting to know Nancy at some Bar functions we attended together. What an amazing woman and what a courageous battle against cancer. Thinking of you my friend. Let me know if there is anything I can do for you. Rick

  • Janet Wornall

    To Nancy's family, I was also one of the 100 freshmen girls at UNC-CH the fall of 1965. Nancy and her friend from Raleigh (her last name was Black ?) were across the hall from my room on the third floor of West Cobb dormitory. After our freshman year, we all began to lose touch with one another. I moved to Charlotte after law school at UNC-CH, and a few years ago I saw her from a distance at the Morrocroft Harris Teeter. Unmistakable!! I yelled ISPHORDING across the store, and there she was, that infectious laugh and still looking like she did in college, except more beautiful. I am so sorry to read of her death and her struggle with cancer. She was a gift to everyone fortunate enough to cross her path in this life.

  • Anissa Hignight

    Nancy was one of many teachers at Providence that taught me how to teach. I was in her classroom as an inclusion teacher for several years. She was always so put together from her hair to her outfit, a beautiful woman inside and out. We often talked of my kids and her grandkids (who are around the same ages). She was so proud of her family! The world has lost a great human being, but I am sure I will see her again one day. To her husband, kids, and grandkids I am praying for you all. I will do my best to carry on Nancy's moto of "bleachen and teachen"!

  • Joyce Payne

    When I began teaching at Providence high school, Nancy was one of the first to welcome me. She was always helpful and supportive. In the years I worked with her, I never once saw her lose patience with anyone. She was a woman of great dignity, charm, and intelligence. She made a positive impact on many Students and fellow teachers.

  • Margaritha Harmaty

    Nancy was remarkably beautiful inside and outside. She was a great colleague, always positive, welcoming, and supportive.
    A light went out with her passing.

  • Carol and Tom O’Dell

    Nancy has been my neighbor for 25 years but since her retirement we became good buddies too. We often went to breakfast or had coffee with a few other buddies in the neighborhood. We often shared sadnesses and joys over the past years and even with all that Nancy faced she kept her head high and was a symbol of positivity to all of us. Always loved her smile and laugh, her love of pretty plants and she was the group’s fashionista . She could put a scarf with an outfit and always looked good. She even wore the prettiest turbans as well. I’ll miss our walks together so much. She could always outwalk me! Our garden club will miss her too. She was always accommodating and had meetings in her home...such a gracious hostess. Dan and family you are in my heart and thoughts so much .....

  • Don and Jan Jaeger

    To the MacMillan family: We are honored that we were able to know Nancy through Jan's work at the law firm. She was a beautiful, intelligent, fun-loving and caring woman. Although we are heartbroken for all of you we are also so very happy that you had these past 7 years with her. You are in our hearts and prayers.

  • Rita James

    As I look at the picture, it is just the face of Nancy that I remembered. She was always pleasant, smile on her face, and always present for a conversation. I was a young math teacher at Providence at the time she was there, and she always reached out to say hello . My sincere condolences to the Macmillan family.

  • Annie McCanless

    Nancy MacMillan was a fast friend and colleague of mine at Providence High School. She taught 10th grade English classes three of our four children. The Family History project that she and Gloria Jackson created is invaluable to our family. Our family cherishes the grandparent and family interviews written and required by the project. I remember walking in the Media Center really late one afternoon and they were grading these projects-such dedication and maybe some enjoyment.
    Nancy was a mentor to me as I took on Advanced Placement classes. She was experienced and I was a novice and struggling with personalities, assignment grading, and testing. She was so encouraging and positive. Our conversations at the copy machine were always what I needed to get me through the day.
    Nancy was always gracious and friendly to me and to others. Teaching is hard work and time consuming-especially English teachers. She was the best!

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