By Mary Brant, Regional Communications Manager
Bill Miller operated his family’s pharmacy, Miller Drug in Bangor, Maine, for 55 years. He and his wife, Gloria, had a rich, full life that included four children, a strong community connection and a deeply held belief in the importance of volunteer work.
Gloria was diagnosed with RH disease early in their married life. This occurs when there is an incompatibility between the blood types of a mother and her baby. She experienced no issues with her first two children but their third child, Lori, required one transfusion and their youngest, Debbie, required three whole-blood transfusions to stabilize her. Fortunately, the blood was available when it was needed. Those experiences made that phrase the need for blood is constant very real for Gloria and Bill. They never forgot that their daughters were helped by the kindness of generous, volunteer donors.
Fast forward roughly 58 years and Bill Miller now serves on the Red Cross Northern New England Region’s Board of Directors in his hometown of Bangor.
“Bill Miller joined our board just a few months before I became the Executive Director in 2015,” said Caroline King, Executive Director of the Red Cross Northern and Eastern Maine Chapter. “He has been an incredible resource, a creative collaborator for the board and a wonderful community connector for the American Red Cross. We are grateful for his generosity and support of our mission.”
Bill lost his beloved wife of 65 years in 2021 and remains close to his four children, Howard, Randi, Lori and Debbie. He remains active in community service and when asked for the “why” behind this commitment his answer is immediate and heartfelt.
“The choice to be an active volunteer serving my community in whatever ways I can is an easy one for me,” says Bill. “My mother and father operated a family store in the neighbor where our family lived. They didn’t let a day go by that they didn’t help someone. They often said to me and my siblings you haven’t had a good day if you haven’t helped someone in need. I have lived my life by that phrase and it has proved to be true.”