The Transylvania Times -

Dr. Napoleon Andrew "Andy" Miller


February 26, 2018

Dr. Napoleon Andrew Miller Jr., of Asheville, known to his friends as “Andy,” died peacefully on Feb. 21, 2018. He had been at Brooks Howell Home since he suffered severe pneumonia in August, 2017, when he needed specialized nursing care.

He was born in Brevard to Napoleon Andrew Miller Sr. and Eva Long Miller on April 9, 1924. He graduated with a B.S. degree in physical education and social studies from Western Carolina University in 1947. Continuing his focus on physical education while adding administration to his credentials, he earned an M.Ed. from Springfield College in 1950.

In 1964, he earned an Ed.D. with a specialty in administration, supervision, and higher education curriculum from the University of Tennessee.

After the United States entered World War II, he interrupted his undergraduate education by joining the Army Air Corps. He flew 32 missions over Europe as a ball turret gunner and waist turret gunner in B-17 bombers with the 551st Squadron, 385th Bomb Group, Eighth Air Force. His crew was only the second crew to survive their 25 missions with all alive.

Upon returning to the United States, he became a high school teacher and coach. At that time, a coach coached all of the sports that a high school had: football (his greatest sports love), both boys’ and girls’ basketball, track, swimming, tennis, golf and any other sport that needed coaching.

He moved into administration as the principal at Mooresville Junior High School, then served as director of instruction for Transylvania County Schools, and then was principal at Brevard High School.

He always supported all of his schools’ sports teams.

While principal at Brevard High School, he led the school in its racial integration, which was without incidents. This was the first North Carolina high school west of Charlotte to integrate.

In 1965, when Watauga County consolidated all of its high schools, he worked diligently to consolidate the students as one school as Watauga High School’s first principal, a position he held for six years.

From 1971 through 1978, he led the Department of Secondary Education at Appalachian State University as its chairperson and professor of education.

Upon the request of the Buncombe County School Board, he served as superintendent of Buncombe County Schools until he retired in 1987.

In recognition of his life-long devotion to secondary school sports, in 1998 he was inducted into the N.C. High School Athletic Association Hall of Fame.

He broadened his influence from the local to the state level when he served on several state committees, including but not limited to the Governor’s State Commission for the Public School System of N.C .; the board of directors, N.C. High School Athletic Association; the board of directors, N.C. School of Science and Mathematics; the board of directors, Economic Education in N.C. Public Schools; the Task Force, Poverty in Public Schools; and as coordinator, District VII, N.C. State Committee, Southern Association, Secondary Schools and Colleges.

He was preceded in death by his parents, Napoleon and Eva Miller; his wife, Rusty Miller, and his son, James Miller (a.k.a. Brik).

He is survived by his son, Frederic Miller, of Palm Springs, Fla .; his daughter, Susann Mathews, of Hysham, Mont .; his grandson, Andy Martin, of Brooklyn, N.Y .; his grandson, Rick Martin, of Springboro, Ohio; and his great-grandson, Henrik Martin, of Brooklyn, N.Y.

The memorial service will be held Sunday, Feb. 25, 2018, at 2 p.m. in the chapel at Brooks Howell Home, 266 Merrimon Ave., in Asheville,

A reception will follow.

In lieu of flowers, the family asks that you make donations to Memory Care of Asheville, NC, 100 Far Horizons Lane, Asheville, NC 28803, or at, or to Four Seasons Hospice, 571 South Allen Rd., Flat Rock, NC 28731, or at Both of these exemplary organizations have been instrumental in his care and quality of life as he lived with dementia in his last days.

Anders-Rice Funeral Home is assisting the Miller family.

To sign Dr. Miller’s guestbook online, go to “Memorials” at


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