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Richard Miles

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Richard (Dick) Charles Miles

12 Jan. 1923 – 20 Jan. 2014

Richard (Dick) Charles Miles was born in Basalt, Bingham County, Idaho.  He was the thirteenth child of Arthur William Miles and Ida Jane Neibaur Miles.

A veteran of World War II, Richard served in Tokyo, Japan as a radioman with the 82nd Field Artillery, 1st Cavalry Division, during the Japanese occupation.

He married his first wife, Beatrice I. Robertson before leaving for basic training in January of 1945.  They divorced in 1964 and Richard was granted sole custody of their five children.

From 1952 to 1972, he lived in Idaho Falls, Idaho.  He held down numerous jobs to support his family.  His day job was as a master printer for the Atomic Energy Commission.  In the evening, he worked as a janitor and Fuller Brush Salesman.  On weekends, he worked at Hughes Chinchilla Ranch.  He still found time to be involved with his children, taking them fishing in the summer and ice skating in the winter.

While working for the Atomic Energy Commission, Richard was exposed to radiation shortly after the SL1 Experimental Nuclear Power Reactor Incident which killed three operators on January 3, 1961.  He developed skin melanoma due to his exposure.  For over a decade, he diligently fought a claim with the U.S. Department of Labor – Energy Division.  The day after receiving a check for his claim, he was told his cancer was terminal.

In 1967, he married his second wife, Shigeko Yamamuro Miles.  They were married for 47 years.  They moved to Marina, California in 1972, when Richard accepted a position in the graphic arts department for the Defense Language Institute at the Presidio in Monterey.  With Shigeko's encouragement, Richard continued his education and received his Associate of Arts degree in business from Monterey Peninsula College.  While employed by the Defense Language Institute he took an assignment at Taukkunen Barracks, Worms, Germany for two years where he was in charge of reorganizing the printing department.  They had no children of their own except their dogs, Koko then Yuki.

Richard was a polite and kind man who was known for his quick wit and humor. He was always with tune, be it song or a whistle.  He frequented the Denny's in Marina where he would leave smiley faces on the ketchup bottles to the amusement of the wait staff.  He was an avid fisherman, gardener and woodworker.  His woodwork entries placed several times at the Monterey County Fair.  He was an active member of the American Legion Cyprus Post 694, Marina, CA.

He is survived by his wife, Shigeko Miles of San Francisco; sister, Wilma (Mart) Madsen of Idaho Falls; sister-in-law, Norma (Angus) Miles of Shelley; son Richard M. Miles of Crescent City, CA.; daughters, Nancy C. Kelley of Madison, AL., Patricia S. (Gene) Hall of Tucson, AZ., Roxanne (Jim) Long of Lynchburg, Va., and Kelly J. (Yoshi) Daikoku of San Francisco; nine grandchildren; and seventeen great-grandchildren.

The family would like to thank the doctors and nurses of California Pacific Medical Center, San Francisco for their comforting care during our father's final hours.

Our father's wish is to honor our veterans by supporting the development of the California Central Coast Veterans Cemetery located in Fort Ord. To help with this development, please contact the Veterans Administration or visit www.CCCVC.com and show your support.

Published in San Francisco Chronicle on Feb. 6, 2014
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