Miller, 76, hospital director

D. M.

March 22, 2001|By Jacques Kelly | Jacques Kelly,SUN STAFF

Deloris M. Miller, who retired as director of a hospital for the mentally disabled and as an Army Reserve colonel, died Friday of a heart attack at Union Memorial Hospital. She was 76 and lived in Northwest Baltimore.

In 1960, Miss Miller joined the staff of Rosewood Center in Owings Mills, where she was a case worker for the mentally disabled. Eight years later, she became supervisor of foster care at Henryton Center in Carroll County, a Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene residential facility for mentally disabled adults.

She later became director of Henryton. She retired about 15 years ago.

For the past five years, Miss Miller had been director of the St. James Academy, an after-school tutoring program for 30 children in West Baltimore's Lafayette Square.

"She was a quiet, active and real presence in church," said the Rev. Enrique Brown, interim rector of St. James Episcopal Church, which is home to the academy. "The children knew her as straightforward, caring and warm. She was also very generous to them."

Born in Baltimore and raised on Carrollton Avenue, Miss Miller graduated from Douglass High School and received a bachelor's degree in education from what is now Coppin State College.

She received a master's degree in social work from Howard University and a master's in science from the Johns Hopkins University. She had a certificate of administration in mental retardation from the University of Alabama.

After a brief stint as a teacher in Baltimore public schools, Miss Miller joined the Women's Army Corps in 1952.

She later recalled that the day she received her second lieutenant's bars at Camp Lee, Va., was one of the happiest of her life. She said she was relieved to have survived the rigors of basic training.

From Camp Lee, she was assigned to Fort Benjamin Harrison, Ind., and Fort Leonard Wood, Mo. From 1955 to 1957, she was in Japan, where she commanded a WAC unit.

A few years after leaving Japan, she left active service but remained in the Reserve. In 1977, she was promoted to colonel.

A memorial service will be held at 10 a.m. Saturday at St. James Episcopal Church, Lafayette and Arlington avenues, where she had been a member for many years.

Miss Miller is survived by cousins.

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