After forty years of military service, and twenty-five years of teaching and coaching, Colonel Gary Miller retired and found pickleball, or maybe it found him! Whichever it was, Miller and pickleball soon fell in love with each other! Gary played his first game in November 2012. He says he loves the soft game and practices whenever possible. Together with his Rapid City pickleball crew, he’s played tournaments all over, including National Senior Games in Minneapolis (2015) and Albuquerque (2019), and Nationals (2017) in Casa Grande, AZ. He says, “Great fun!”
This spring, in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Army contacted Colonel Miller to see if he would be interested in a six-month tour as a retiree recall. They were looking for help, and he says he was bored with sitting at home, so he accepted, and now he’s back in uniform at Ft. Leonard Wood, MO.
Colonel Miller spends his weekdays at the General Leonard Wood Army Community Hospital as the Chief of Operations. Days are filled with Operation Orders, Daily Tasking Orders, Commander’s Critical Information Requirements, Serious Incident Reports, and about 100 emails each day. Medicine has a language all it’s own, so Gary’s learning that along with all the changes that have happened since he retired.
On the weekends, he sneaks away to one of the local towns and plays pickleball. He says he is making many new friends but misses the RC crew. But, Colonel Miller is looking forward to Oct 30, when I can take the uniform off for the last time and rejoin them!