|Birth: ||Dec. 29, 1931|
|Death: ||Mar. 13, 2012|
Dr. William "Bill" "Willie" E. Miller, 80, of Evansville, passed away Tuesday, March 13, 2012, at his temporary home at Willow Park Resident Center.
Bill was born in Sebree, Ky. to the late Daisy and Odell Shelton, and raised by his grandparents, the late Robert and Daisy Johnson.
He fought a courageous battle with Parkinson disease and died of an aneurysm of the stomach.
He graduated from Lincoln High School in 1951 and devoted 29 consecutive years as a teacher, assistant principal and principal in the Evansville Vanderburgh School Corporation. His dedication is demonstrated by his enthusiastic commitment to the education of students and community involvement.
He attended Tuskegee Institute (now University) and earned BA and MA degrees from Evansville College (now University of Evansville). He was a U.S. Army Veteran of the Korean Conflict, serving as a paratrooper in the 11th Airborne Division from 1953 to 1955. He holds an Educational Administration Certification from Indiana University.
He was responsible for establishing Epsilon Iota Chapter of Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity, Inc. and was instrumental in chartering the Evansville Alumni Chapter that has given over $50,000 in scholarships to Evansville area high school graduates. Bill served as President of both chapters. He was elected to the Board of Directors and served as Vice President of the North Central Province of Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity, Inc. He was the first African-American elected to the Vanderburgh County Council. Bill was President of the Evansville Board of Public Safety; Friends of Public Library, having currently served as Secretary of EPL; and Evansville Retired Teachers Association. He served on the boards of the University of Evansville Alumni Association and the Vanderburgh County Council on Aging, was Chairman of the Police Merit Commission, served as EVSC Building Chairman of Culver Elementary School, and was a contributor and volunteer carpenter with Habitat for Humanity for five years. Bill was a member of the Board of Directors for the Buffalo Trace Council Boy Scouts of America and the Housing Opportunity for People of Evansville (HOPE). He was Construction Chairman and Vice President of the Board of Directors of Evansville African American Museum (first in the state), and currently served as curator of EAAM. He retains a Life Membership in the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP). He retired as Principal from McGary Middle School and was the recipient of the Indiana Industrial Arts Teacher of the Year award.
Bill assisted Architect Charles Saletta with the design and plan of Culver Elementary School (K-8). This design was later used as a model for replication at Daniel Wertz Elementary School (K-8). He participated in a National Education study tour of nine countries in West Africa and the World Congress of Teaching Professions in Lomé, Togo. He received an Honorary Doctor of Laws degree from University of Southern Indiana for valuing education of students and commitment to community service.
He was a longtime active member of Liberty Missionary Baptist Church for over 65 years. He served as a trustee, mentor and instructor in the Youth Services Education Program and was Scout Master for Troop #64. He was a member of Old Liberty Preservation Society.
Bill was preceded in death by his parents, Daisy (Winstead) and Odell Shelton; brother, Ray Shelton; and sisters, Mary Shelton Taylor and Geraldine Shelton.
He is survived by his wife of 59 years, Mattie, of Evansville; son, Kori, of Los Angeles, Calif.; grandson, Branden of Michigan; sisters, Florence Terry of Racine, Wis., Cora "Doris" Cunningham of Henderson, Ky. and Lorine William of Pomona, Calif.; special nieces, Clara Bertinelli and Rosemary Taylor; other nieces, nephews, cousins and close friends, including Ira T. Neal, James "Starchy" Anderson, W. Harold Calloway and Emma Green Harris; and Fraternity Brothers of Evansville Alumni Chapter of Kappa Alpha Psi.
Homegoing services will be 11 a.m. Saturday, February 17, 2012, at Liberty Baptist Church, 7th and Oak Street, officiated by Rev. Todd M. Robertson, with burial in Alexander Memorial Park. Friends may visit Friday from 4 to 7 p.m. at Alexander East Chapel, 2115 Lincoln Avenue.
Special thanks to Living Waters Hospice Care, Pastor Steve, Social Worker Clara Bertinelli and Nurse Laura, Willow Park Residence Center, Senior Helpers Home Care Agency and River Pointe Health Center.
In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to Evansville African American Museum, PO Box 3124, Evansville, IN 47731.
Condolences may be made online at www.AlexanderEastChapel.com.
Published in Courier Press on March 15, 2012
Odell Shelton (1909 - 1983)
Daisy Drake Shelton (1916 - 1984)
William Edward Miller (1931 - 2012)
Cora Lee Shelton Cunningham (1935 - 2014)*
Geraldine Shelton (1938 - 1947)*
Prentice Ray Shelton (1942 - 1968)*
Alexander Memorial Park Cemetery
Created by: BDA.
Record added: Mar 15, 2012
Find A Grave Memorial# 86783448