In Memoriam: Henry Tyrus "Ty" Miller


Information adapted from the Paducah Sun

Dr. Henry Tyrus "Ty" Miller, PhD, died on Saturday, 23 November 2013, in Paducah, Kentucky.

A graduate of Baltimore Polytechnic High School, Miller played semipro baseball and worked at Bethlehem Steel before attending Johns Hopkins University. He graduated with a BE in civil engineering with sanitary option in 1954. In 1960 he earned an MS in physics from the U.S. Naval Postgraduate School, Monterey, California, and in 1970 he earned a PhD in environmental sciences and engineering from the University of North Carolina School of Public Health, Chapel Hill, where he was a member of the Sigma Xi honor society.

Miller served 20 years as an active-duty Army officer and was a graduate of the U.S. Army Ranger School. He became a member of U.S. Army Medical Services Corps and was handpicked by President John F. Kennedy to join the Armed Forces Radiobiology Research Institute, National Naval Medical Center, Bethesda, Maryland. He became a licensed reactor operator and performed original research at Oak Ridge, Tennessee. He received the Army Commendation Medal for Meritorious Service in 1971. His last overseas tour of duty was Okinawa, where he was commander at the U.S. Army Pacific Environmental Health Engineering Agency and radiation protection manager from 1971 to 1974. As cochairman of the Okinawa Prefecture Joint Environmental Protection and Improvement Committee, he received a Commendation of Cooperation in July 1974 and was awarded Full Honor and Respect for Great Service and Efforts for Mutual Understanding by Chobya Yara, Governor of the Okinawa Prefecture, Japan. He returned to the Pentagon and retired in 1974 with the rank of Lieutenant Colonel.

He was employed by Gulf Oil, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, from 1974 to 1985 and Chevron Oil of San Francisco, California, from 1985 to1991. In the course of his duties, he served as a member of the International Petroleum Institute and traveled extensively within the United States, Canada, South America, Africa, and Europe.

Miller went to Paducah 22 years ago as senior scientific consultant for Lockheed Martin at the United States Enrichment Corporation's Gaseous Diffusion Plant, receiving an Award of Excellence in 1992 and an Award of Appreciation for Dedication of Service upon his retirement in 1998. He taught physics at the Engineering School of the Western Kentucky Community & Technical College. He was a member of the Lone Oak Lions Club, receiving Outstanding Lion of the Year 2004–2005. A member of Lone Oak United Methodist Church, he served several years as its treasurer. He sang with both the Paducah Community Chorus and Paducah Symphony Chorus.

Miller was a certified health physicist, a professional engineer, an environmental engineer certified in three specialties, a certified industrial hygienist, and a certified safety professional and radiation protection engineer. He was the author of more than 40 professional publications and a member of a number of professional societies, including the New York Academy of Sciences, the Health Physics Society, and the American Association for the Advancement of Science.

Miller was an ardent and omnivorous reader, a jogger, and a lover of dogs, sporty cars, travel, baseball, golf, and watches and enjoyed ice cream whenever the opportunity arose. He always knew about a good restaurant in any city, usually at the end of a long walk.

Miller is survived by his wife, Barbetha (Goeb) Miller; children, Gretchen Miller Beck (husband Harry Beck) of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, Tyrus Henry Miller (wife Deanna Shemek) of Santa Cruz, California, and Thomas Erik Miller (wife Susan Miller); and granddaughters, Isabelle Ruth Miller and Polly Ann Miller of Fayetteville, North Carolina. His parents were Henry Miller and Louise Henter Miller of Baltimore, Maryland.