I read of the last hours of President George H.W. Bush’s life, the final exchanges between him and his son, George, his closest friends and family and pastor and physicians. AT 94 “he was ready” with no doubt in anyone’s mind. HE died at peace, filled by faith and love. Precious.
With that, timing is God’s blessing, I received such a thoughtful e-mail from a grade and high school classmate, Richard Peterson. Dick is now a retired dentist living in Vancouver, Washington. He shared this about my father, Hank Miller. I knew my father scouted for the Jefferson High School, Portland, head football coach. Dad never bragged on it; he simply wanted to help others. Hopefully that DNA has not left me.
So. I share a story about my father. He was born in 1908 and died in 1994. God rest his soul. “Dad? You were the best. You knew what I didn’t. At 7 you gave me my first glove—was for my right hand! I was right-handed, but no longer since you believed left-handed baseball pitchers were better. You also—with Mom—never missed a game when I was in high school, and flew to Palo Alto to watch your portsider son pitch against USC. Know that I love you, always will. Your son.”
From Dick Peterson:
Subject: your dad hank miller
I was going thru my old high school press clippings from over 60 years ago (not that many). And, I have an interesting story about your dad, Hank Miller. As you know, your dad was a scout for Jeff Hi in the 50’s for both Eric Waldorf and Tom DeSylvia.
Each Friday he would scout the opponent for our next game and give the coaches information of their offensive formations, defensive alignments, favorite plays, and star players.
Anyway, before the Lincoln game in October of ’55 for the city title, my sophomore year (I was placed on varsity because star QB Chuck Rask was hurt and I backed up Chuck Jacques), your dad gave us valuable information for a few of us in DeSylvia’s office after his garbage route. Lincoln had a very good team with the best running back in the state, Paul Goddard, an all-state end, Ron Anderson, and all state tackle, Berkely Holman. Lincoln was favored to win the game to a sell-out crowd.
Your dad supplied us with all the necessary information along with one very important fact. The Lincoln QB, I forget his name, pointed his right foot when the play was going to the right side of the line. He pointed his left foot to the left side of the line when going left. If his feet were parallel he was backing for a pass or a handoff to the fullback. Our linebackers, Bill Krohn, Bob Jacobs, Roger Thompson would key on the QB feet and prevented any long gains.
Your dad, because of his scouting, likely won the game for us, 20-14, due to his discovery. Also, to my knowledge, your dad did the scouting out of the goodness of his heart, never received much recognition, and, very likely, no financial gain. Well, I thought you might like this story of your dear dad.