Thomas Owen Miller
August 29, 1942 – April 2, 2021
Thomas Owen Miller, age 78, of Phoenix, passed away on Friday, April 2, 2021 in Phoenix, Arizona. He was born on August 29, 1942 to the late Melvin C. and Bernice P. (Boggs) Miller in Akron, Ohio. He attended Barberton High School in Ohio, and graduated in 1960. On February 22, 1997 he married Laura T. Darvas in Phoenix. Prior to his retirement in 2002, Tom worked as a Television Broadcast Engineer for KPHO Channel 5 in Phoenix. He was a proud member of American Legion Post #107, Past Commander of the American Legion Post 91 in Berea, Ohio, member of BPOE Elks Lodge #0335, and the National Society of Broadcast Engineers. In 1995, Tom was inducted into the Broadcaster’s Hall of Fame in Akron, Ohio, in recognition of over 30 years in television engineering.
Tom started his electronics career at an early age; he completed a home study course in electronics while he was still in high school. His professional career began at WHTM in Harrisburg, PA in 1965. In 1966 he moved to Cleveland, OH where he spent 20 years at the NBC owned and operated station WKYC. Tom designed new television transmitters and studios, and was promoted to engineering department management in 1971. He supervised many remote sports broadcasts all over the country for NBC, as well as local news and entertainment broadcast events in the Cleveland area. In 1988 Tom moved to WJW-TV in Cleveland as Chief Engineer, and in 1996 moved to KPHO in Phoenix. Tom was a rarity in the broadcast engineering profession – primarily self-taught and always inventive. He authored a textbook on video switching and distribution systems for the Cleveland Institute of Electronics in 1970, still in use today.
Tom enlisted in the U.S. Army in 1962 and served until 1965. He was assigned to the White House Communications Agency, Washington, DC, and to Camp David, MD on civilian status. He served both Presidents Kennedy and Johnson and, when asked, would share interesting stories about his involvement during these historic years. Tom developed a deep love of country, undoubtedly as a result of his unique military service.
Throughout his life, Tom achieved proficiency and excellence in a number of interests. A genealogist for decades, Tom leaves his family with an astounding legacy of over 58,000 documented ancestors, from hearty Scotch-Irish folk in West Virginia to royal families in England and France. Most recently, his research gave his family a Mayflower descendant, and a linkage to the Saint Joseph who provided the tomb for Jesus Christ after his crucifixion.
Tom’s singing voice was beautiful and so karaoke was added to his many interests in the early 1990s. He loved jazz music, played keyboards and could not only play the Hammond organ but fix the mechanics and electronics of these intricate instruments. Tom is survived by his loving spouse of 24 years, Laura; three children, Craig (Tanya) Miller, Gary (Mary) Miller, and Carole Faletti; sister, Judy Rice; four granddaughters – Madison Miller, McKensie Miller, Meaghan Emory and Danielle Dinet – and one great-grandson, Owen Dinet. Funeral services with Military Honors will be held at 11:00 AM on Friday, April 9, 2021 at the Shadow Mountain Mortuary, 2350 E. Greenway Road, Phoenix, AZ 85022.
Funeral Service with Military Honors
Friday, April 9, 2021
Thomas Owen Miller
April 6, 2021
I am so happy the dad was able to meet and play with his great grandson, Owen!
April 6, 2021
A great dad who fought his disease with dignity and stoicism, even some humor along the way. In my youth he inspired me to love technology, jazz, genealogy, astronomy, photography, and more. Even more importantly, he taught me to do things right the first time, that there are no shortcuts in life, and that integrity, intelligence, honesty and hard work are what get you to where you want to be. Dad, you left the best of yourself in me, I hope I can live up to your standard.
Rest in peace!