Millard Franklin Kirk, a retired civil engineer and World War II veteran, died of respiratory failure Friday at the Fairhaven Continuing Care Retirement Community. The Sykesville resident was 91.
A native of Philadelphia, he used his surname Kirk as a first name.
He earned a bachelor of science in civil engineering at the University of Maryland, College Park. Beginning in 1943, he attended Midshipman's School at Notre Dame University and was commissioned as an ensign in the Navy's Civil Engineer Corps, known as the Seabees.
Family members said he was assigned to the South Pacific during World War II, and he worked in construction and in a maintenance unit on the islands of Biak, Mios Woendi and New Guinea. After the war ended, he was sent to the Bikini Atoll, where he and his unit built scientific instrument towers to record the effects of atomic bomb tests.
After the war, he worked as a civil engineer and returned to active duty during the Korean War. He retired from the Naval Reserve with the rank of lieutenant commander in 1966.
As a civilian, he held jobs at the U.S. Coast and Geodetic Survey, Edgewood Arsenal, the Army Corps of Engineers, and the National Security Agency. He also worked for Kidde Consultants in Towson. He retired in the mid-1980s.
He enjoyed photography, roller skating, pool and ten-pin bowling. He also spent time with his grandchildren.
A memorial service will be held at 11 a.m. Saturday at the Fairhaven Chapel, 7200 Third Ave. in Sykesville.
Survivors include his wife of 65 years, the former Betty Lyons; two sons, Scott Kirk of Woodbine and Mark Kirk of New Market; nine grandchildren; and three great-grandchildren.