Damon Craddock Miller died Feb. 10 of prostate cancer at George Washington University Hospital, according to his close friend Richard Mumford. He was 71 and died of prostate cancer.
Miller was born on Jan. 26, 1947 in Summit, N.J., attended elementary school in Oakville, Ontario, and graduated as valedictorian from the Bolles School in Jacksonville, Fla.
He graduated from Princeton University in 1968 with an A.B. cum laude in politics and completed Naval Officer Candidate School in Newport, R.I., the same year. Miller served on active duty until 1972 on the USS Northampton and USS Hawkins. He retired from the Naval Reserve in 1991 with the rank of Commander, U.S. Navy Reserve.
Miller graduated from the University of Pennsylvania Law School in 1975 with honors. He had a 32-year career as a maritime lawyer, first with Rawle and Henderson in Philadelphia from 1975-1984, then with the U.S. Department of Justice in Washington, from which he retired as Senior Admiralty Counsel in 2007.
An arts lover his whole life, Miller sang with the Mendelssohn Club in Philadelphia, where he performed with the Philadelphia Orchestra under Eugene Ormandy and Riccardo Muti, and with the Oratorio Society of Washington, performing with the National Symphony Orchestra under Mstislav Rostropovich. He also sang in two choirs at Cedar Lane Unitarian Universalist Church in Bethesda, Md.
Miller, who was gay, was active in the Chrysalis Arts and Culture Group of Washington, a gay men’s organization that visits museums, historic homes and other attractions. He hiked frequently with Adventuring, an LGBT outdoors group, and regularly led their hikes at the National Arboretum, Great Falls and Rock Creek Park. In retirement, he volunteered as a teacher of English as a second language in Bethesda. He loved to travel, both nationally and internationally, and kept track of the states he had visited, reaching 49 when he went to Alaska several summers ago; only Hawaii eluded his quest for a complete tally.
Miller is survived by his brother, Richard W. Miller, and sister-in-law, Rosalia G-H. Miller, of Washington; and his best friend and companion, Richard Mumford of Alexandria, Va., along with a niece, nephew, grandniece and grandnephew. Memorial gifts may be made to the Damon C. Miller Fund at the Greater Washington Community Foundation and to ZERO — the End of Prostate Cancer (zerocancer.org). A memorial service was held Feb. 18.