Donald H. Miller died June 28, 2021; he would have been 80 on November 30. Don was a devoted family man and leaves behind his wife of 58 years and best friend for 63, Linda De Jong Miller; son, T. Christian (Leslie) and grandchildren, George, Livia, and Ruby of Kensington, CA; son, Joshua (Andrea) and grandchildren, Aiden and Kai of Durham, NC.
Don was born in Calistoga, California and raised in Hayward and Castro Valley, California. He graduated from the University of California, Berkeley in biochemistry and then fulfilled his Naval ROTC commitment on the USS Taussig destroyer based in San Diego. He received his doctorate in biochemistry at Johns Hopkins Medical University in Baltimore in 1970 and did post-graduate work in Göttingen, Germany and Bloomington, Indiana. He spent the last thirty years of his career working as a basic scientist and professor in pharmacology at the Medical University of South Carolina in Charleston.
Don was one of the few people who could appreciate and understand what a great body of long, hard work scientists had accomplished, and the great gift they had given the world in the messenger RNA Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna COVID vaccines. This spring, it upset Don greatly that there was so much vaccination hesitancy even in our own community when these vaccinations could prevent COVID from hurting and killing people.
While living in Charleston, Don ran 6 or 7 miles most days of the week and loved kayaking the Lowcountry rivers. Since retiring to Hendersonville from Charleston 13 years ago, he became an avid hiker, played basketball and exercised at the YMCA, monitored creeks for pollution with MountainTrue (formerly ECO), completely eradicated an enormous amount of kudzu and Japanese knotweed covering his property, took many classes in the Blue Ridge Naturalist program and monitored box turtle movements at the Arboretum, was active in his homeowners association serving three times as president, and was a League of Women Voters member working with his wife Linda on many projects in Hendersonville.
Don loved his retirement in the mountains of Hendersonville, especially enjoying the plays and musicals at the Flat Rock Theatre, meals at the many great eateries, attending the simulcast New York Metropolitan Operas at the Carolina Cinemark in Asheville, and just being in the mountains breathing mountain air.
His death came about because of problems caused from a previous surgery years ago. His family is grateful for the exceptionally competent and compassionate care he received from the doctors, nurses, and staff at Pardee, particularly the ICU staff.
In lieu of flowers, please send donations to Pardee Hospital Foundation at 561 Fleming St., 28739.