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Ralph E. ‘Dusty’ Miller Jr., Vietnam veteran and CIA employee, dies

Ralph E. “Dusty” Miller Jr. completed two tours of duty as a Marine in Vietnam.
Ralph E. “Dusty” Miller Jr. completed two tours of duty as a Marine in Vietnam.

Ralph E. “Dusty” Miller Jr., who completed two tours of duty as a Marine in Vietnam and later worked for the CIA, died Aug. 5 at FutureCare Canton Harbor of complications from Alzheimer’s disease. The former longtime Laurel resident was 82.

Ralph Edward Miller Jr., son of Ralph E. Miller Sr. and Alice B. Crumbacker Miller, was born and raised in Baltimore. After graduating in 1956 from West Nottingham Academy in Colora in Cecil County, he entered the University of Maryland, College Park after being awarded a baseball scholarship.

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He left Maryland and joined the Marine Corps in 1961, and after completing basic training and being assigned to intelligence, was in one of the first combat units deployed to Vietnam.

After serving, Mr. Miller was recruited by the National Security Agency and worked there for two years before entering Maryville College in Maryville, Tennessee, where he earned a bachelor’s degree in 1972.

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He returned to West Nottingham Academy where he coached three sports until joining the Army Special Forces, where he became a Green Beret in 1979 and stayed on the A-Team until 1981. Five years later, at 48, he completed jump school, and was the communications team sergeant until the unit was deactivated in 1994.

Mr. Miller had been recruited by the CIA in 1982, where his work was classified, family members said. He retired in 2003.

For years, he was an emergency medical technician for the Maryland City Volunteer Fire Department, Station 27, in Laurel, where he directed its cadet training program. The department’s new ambulance will be dedicated in his honor, family members said.

Mr. Miller had been active with the Boy Scouts, where he was scoutmaster and Order of the Arrow chapter adviser. He mentored young men through the Eagle Scout program.

He was a world traveler.

Funeral services were Monday at Baltimore National Cemetery in Catonsville.

Mr. Miller is survived by two nephews, Garry M. Pace of Sparrows Point and Brian D. Rigell of Alcoa, Tennessee; great-nephews, Matthew R. Pace of Aberdeen and Timothy B. Pace of Dundalk; a great-niece, Caroline P. Rudacille of York, Pennsylvania; three great-great nephews; and a great-great niece.

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