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An American Family History

Robert Wilson Miller, Jr.



Presbyterians are Protestant Christians. The denomination originated in Scotland and congregations are ruled by elected elders. Presbyterian theology follows the Calvanist tradition and emphasizes the sovereignty of God, the authority of the Scriptures, and grace through faith in Christ.

Robert Wilson Miller was born on Tuesday December 10, 1918 in Puyallup, Pierce County, Washington. His parents were May Violet Treahy and Robert Wilson Miller, Sr.

His family was in Puyallup because his father had gone to find work there during World War I.

The warended on November 11, just before he was born. He was born during the terrible Spanish flu epidemic and they could not get a doctor to attend the birth. His mother, May, told him that there were bodies of flu victims piled up on the sidewalks waiting to be removed at the time of his birth.

Robert's family moved to San Pedro, California in 1919. As a boy he had a paper route and sold magazines and won many contests for selling the most papers.  He was good in school and had many friends. He enjoyed all kinds of music. He loved classical, opera, and bands popular at the time. He played the violin. He enjoyed collecting stamps, going to the movies, the beach, and playing baseball.  He liked roaming around town with friends. He made his own tennis racquet out of an old frame he found.  He used to make carts to ride down 23rd street where he lived which was quite steep.

He won a radio and he and a friend found a 25 foot board which they cut in half and put up a 50’ antenna for the radio.  He was able to pick up countries as far away as Japan, German and England on the radio. 

Handball Doubles Title
Dan Burke and Bob Miller captured the handball doubles championship of Dana playground yesterday defeating Martinez and Androvich, 21-17, 20-21, 21-20 in the final of the tournament which had been under way for two weeks. Director Frank Hopkins has started a ladder tournament in handball.

Robert attended Point Fermin Elementary School, Dana Jr. High, and graduated from San Pedro High School in January, 1936.  He graduated from Compton College with an AA degree in 1938 and attended University of Southern California from 1940 to 1947.

He began working  for North American Aviation in 1938 where he was rapidly promoted. He worked on the B-25 and the Mustang during World War II and the F86 Saber and F100 Super Saber after the war.  He also worked on Saturn the Apollo booster and did some work on Apollo and the Space shuttle. 

As an adult he enjoyed playing tennis several times a week and sang in the church choir. He also enjoyed woodworking and working in the garden. For many years he had a beautiful dichondra lawn. He would spend hours weeding his lawn, weed by weed. Mostly he used a steak knife from the kitchen to dig out the weeds. He loved to read and enjoyed books by James Michener, Will and Ariel Durant, and Tony Hillerman.

He also loved to travel and especially loved visting Hawaii. He would often take the family out on Sunday drives. He like to drive around the peninsula and stop for strawberries at the stands where the Japanese farmers sold their strawberries. When leaving on a long trip he would always say “here we go like a herd of turtles."

He rarely cooked, but when he did he made bacon and eggs. He was also in charge of making toast when the family ate breakfast together. When he made cinnamon toast that had the icing on top he called it lava toast because the icing was so hot and he would take it out of the toaster with his knife and toss it with the knife to the lucky recipient. After Virginia died, he was the master of the microwave.He was a great handyman. He could fix almost anything around the house and had learned woodworking from his father. He made doll furniture, boxes with names in script cut with the jig saw, and useful items for the house like a key rack. Once he made Virginia a long handled dust pan so she wouldn’t have to bend over when she swept. He built a playhouse in the back yard and constructed a covered wagon and miniature log cabin for the children.He was a very loving father. Every morning he would leave for work very early before everyone woke up. He would make the rounds and kiss all of his girls goodbye before he left. He always helped with math homework. He would say “no Miller gets a C in arithmetic." He was proud of his girls and loved to take one to the bank with him on Friday nights. Almost every Friday when he went to the bank he would bring home a silly present for everyone which he called “Friday night prizes." One memorable present was collapsible scissors.

He was also a very loving husband.  He and Virginia had a playful, romantic, respectful relationship. He brought her little gifts and flowers and frequently took her out on Friday nights.

In 1954 he joined the First Presbyterian Church of San Pedro and became a ruling elder in 1958. He frequently went to session meetings at the church and every Thursday he went to choir practice. He especially loved Handel’s “Halleluiah Chorus.

After he retired from Rockwell International, he kept busy delivering meals on wheels, playing tennis, and remained active at the church. 

When his wife, Virginia, was sick with her final illness, he lovingly nursed her until the end.

He died in San Pedro Hospital on November 10, 1997.  His ashes are interred at Green Hills Cemetery in San Pedro.

Three daughters of William Towne and Joanna Blessing were wrongly accused of practicing witchcraft in Salem. Rebecca Towne Nurse, Mary Towne Estey, and Sarah Towne Bridges Cloyes were persecuted in 1692. The children of people in the line below are all descendants of Mary Estey.

William Towne,
Mary Towne Estey,
Isaac Estey,
Aaron Estey
,
Mary Estey Dwinnell
,
Israel Dwinnell,
Isaac Davis Dwinnell, Sr.,
Isaac Davis Dwinnell, Jr.
,
Victoria Zellena Dwinnell
,
Robert Wilson Miller, Sr
.,
Robert Wilson Miller, Jr.


World War II was a global conflict that lasted from 1939 to 1945. The Allies (United States, British Commonwealth countries, and the Soviet Union) fought against the Axis (Germany, Japan and Italy).

 

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Passed away in San Pedro on November 10, 1997.  Born in Puallyup, Washington on December 10, 1918 to Robert Wilson Miller Sr., and May Treahy Miller, he had been a resident of San Pedro since 1920. Robert attended San Pedro Schools, Compton College and USC, and worked for North American Aviation which later became Rockwell International  for over for years until he retired in 1981. Bob enjoyed sports and played baseball for many years before he seriously took up tennis in 1962. He was very proud of the many tennis trophies he won playing both singles and doubles in tournaments. 

He married Virginia Smith in 1946 and after raising three daughters, they spent happy years together traveling through the southwest and visiting Hawaii until her illness and death in 1991. He missed Virginia terribly, and although he continued to be an active member of the First Presbyterian Church and to play tennis and do the other things he enjoyed, it was never the same.

He was preceded in death by his sister, Hester Miller and is survived by three daughters and their husbands, Shelley and John Mitchell of Kneeland, California, Roberta and Mitchell Tuller of Valley Village and Jeanne Miller and Greg Scherer of Santa Rosa; his grandchildren, Joshua and Tyler Mitchell, Hannah and Madeline Tuller, Michael Park and Rachel Connelly; and his very good friends, Dick and Sue Gustason.  A private family memorial service was held.

 

DNA match with other descendant in this line.
Walter Powers
Thomas Powers
Jeremiah Powers
Elizabeth Powers Davis
Eunice Davis Dwinnell
Isaac Davis Dwinnell, Sr.
Isaac Davis Dwinnell, Jr.
Victoria Dwinnell Miller
Robert Wilson Miller, Sr.
Robert Wilson Miller, Jr.

 
 

DNA match with other descendant in this line.
Samuel Davis
Simon Davis
Captain Isaac Davis
Eunice Davis Dwinnell
Isaac Davis Dwinnell, Sr.
Isaac Davis Dwinnell, Jr.
Victoria Dwinnell Miller
Robert Wilson Miller, Sr.
Robert Wilson Miller, Jr.

 

DNA match with other descendant in this line.
Henry Collins
Joseph Collins
Sarah Collins Richards
Esther Richards Estey
Mary Estey Dwinnell
Israel Dwinnell
Isaac Davis Dwinnell, Sr.
Isaac Davis Dwinnell, Jr.
Victoria Dwinnell Miller
Robert Wilson Miller, Sr.
Robert Wilson Miller, Jr.

DNA match with other descendant in this line.
Richard Kimball
John Kimball
Abigail Kimball Estey
Aaron Estey
Mary Estey Dwinnell
Israel Dwinnell
Isaac Davis Dwinnell, Sr.
Isaac Davis Dwinnell, Jr.
Victoria Dwinnell Miller
Robert Wilson Miller, Sr.
Robert Wilson Miller, Jr.

DNA match with other descendant in this line.
William Warner
Daniel Warner
John Warner
Susannah Warner Fiske
Elizabeth Fiske Dwinnell
Benjamin Dwinnell
Israel Dwinnell
Isaac Davis Dwinnell, Sr.
Isaac Davis Dwinnell, Jr.
Victoria Dwinnell Miller
Robert Wilson Miller, Sr.
Robert Wilson Miller, Jr.

 

Bauman & Dreisbach
 
 
 

©Roberta Tuller 2017
tuller.roberta@gmail.com