Robert Leonard Miller, son of William Miller and Laura Pothast Miller, was born on March 15, 1920, and grew up on the Miller farm on the west side of Waverly. He died Aug. 22, 2013, in Barberton, Ohio, at the age of 93.
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Mr. Miller attended Waverly High School, graduated cum laude from the University of Iowa and later earned a Master of Science degree from Case Institute of Technology.
He moved to Barberton, Ohio, to work at the Columbia Chemical Company where he produced strategic chemicals for World War II. There he earned a 1944 War Department commendation for the development of an emergency kit for downed aviators. The kit converted sea water to drinkable water until they were rescued.
He continued his career in chemical engineering with several large companies, which led to starting his own consulting business.
For more than 40 years, Mr. Miller's Norton, Ohio, consulting practice designed and supported plastics and rubber fabricating processes worldwide. His early designs helped in the development of products such as corrugated drainage pipe, flexible drinking straws and "leaky" irrigation tubing.
In 1990, Theta Tau, the national engineering fraternity elected him into its Hall of Fame.
Still active at the age of 91, Mr. Miller contributed to the development of a three-extruder manufacturing process for truck tire retreads at Goodyear Tire and Rubber Company. In 2012 the technology won Tire Technology International's "Tire Manufacturing Innovation of the Year" award at a juried competition in Cologne, Germany.
Robert was married to Eleanor Hutson, who passed away in 1998. He is survived by his sister, Marion Fruehling, of Waverly; a son, Robert, Jr., his wife Victoria, a grand daughter Alexis, all of Washington, D.C.; and special friend, Kathy Brent, Barberton, Ohio.
His family will host a memorial gathering in Ohio.
Published in Waverly Democrat from Sept. 26 to Oct. 3, 2013