Newmar Corporation’s Virgil Miller Passes Away
Virgil D. Miller, 62, chairman of the board of Newmar Corporation, C4363, an RV manufacturer based in Nappanee, Indiana, died July 7, 2002, at Goshen (Indiana) General Hospital after a lengthy illness.
“It is hard to put into words what Virgil Miller meant to Newmar,” said Dick Parks, who succeeded Mr. Miller as president of Newmar in October 2001. “He was the guiding light not only to Newmar, but to the RV industry. Virgil will be deeply missed.”
Mr. Miller began working at Newmar in 1975 where he started as a codes compliance manager. After serving in several other capacities at the company, he was named president in April 1992. In October 2001 he was promoted to chairman of the board. He also served as president of the Newmar Kountry Klub, the company’s owners club.
Since 1989, Mr. Miller was a member of the Recreation Vehicle Industry Association (RVIA) and had served on its board of directors since December 1993. He also served on several RVIA committees.
Last year RVIA honored him with its highest honor, the Distinguished Service to the RV Industry Award. Walt Bennett, RVIA chairman, commented, “In addition to his business leadership and success, Virgil has become known as the conscience of the RV industry. He is a deeply religious man and his personal integrity has inspired many in the RV industry to follow his example. In that role, Virgil has had a very positive influence for the better on the entire industry. I have never met anyone who did not feel that he was a better person because of knowing Virgil Miller.”
Mr. Miller also served on the RV/MH Heritage Foundation Board of Directors from 1991 to 1999 and was chairman of that board in 1994. In August 2001 he was inducted into the RV/MH Heritage Foundation’s Hall of Fame.
Mr. Miller’s wife, Sarah, passed away in March 2002 after a brief illness. He is survived by two sons, four grandchildren, three brothers, and one sister.
Nationwide Cleanup Effort On Public Lands
Approximately 70,000 people are expected to take part in the ninth annual National Public Lands Day (NPLD) on Saturday, September 28, 2002. Coordinated by the National Environmental Education & Training Foundation, this year’s “Exploring America’s Backyard” nationwide cleanup effort is expected to involve more than 500 parks and other sites throughout the United States.
Sponsored by Toyota Motor Sales USA, NPLD brings together the Boy Scouts, Girl Scouts, Sierra Club, American Hiking Society, Garden Club of America, National Parks Conservation Association, and thousands of other individual and organizational volunteers to refurbish and restore the country’s public places. These sites include national parks, monuments, wildlife refuges, forests, grasslands, marine sanctuaries, lakes, and reservoirs managed by government agencies that Americans use for outdoor recreation, education, and enjoyment.
Volunteers will plant trees and beneficial plants, install signs, improve trails and campgrounds, clean up streams and waterways, clear weeds and overgrown brush, and build facilities.
The NPLD is the largest volunteer, hands-on effort of its kind in the United States. The National Environmental Education & Training Foundation estimates that the volunteers’ work, along with community contributions of food, tools, and equipment, will result in more than $8 million in improvements.
The nine participating federal agencies this year are the Army Corps of Engineers, Bureau of Land Management, Bureau of Reclamation, Department of Defense, Environmental Protection Agency, Fish and Wildlife Service, Forest Service, National Park Service, and Tennessee Valley Authority. Other event partners are the Outdoor Life Network; Backpacker magazine; and approximately 125 state, county, and city partners, including state parks departments in Indiana, Maryland, Massachusetts, Pennsylvania, and Washington.
For more information, including a list of NPLD sites, activities, and contacts, visit www.npld.com or call (800) 865-8337.
WOW Campers Help President Bush Announce Fitness Initiative
Representatives from Wonderful Outdoor World (WOW) were among a group of approximately 1,500 visitors who joined President George W. Bush on June 20, 2002, as he announced his new fitness initiative, HealthierUS, during an exercise expo on the south lawn of the White House.
The HealthierUS initiative was launched to help Americans live longer, better, and healthier lives. The initiative will encourage all Americans to participate in physical activity every day; eat a nutritious diet; receive preventative medical screenings; and make healthful lifestyle choices.
WOW is a national program designed to introduce disadvantaged urban youth to healthful outdoor fun through an overnight campout. WOW campers set up their own campsites, cook their own food, learn about nature and how to make and read maps, and are introduced to outdoors ethics. Campers also are encouraged to enjoy and protect the nation’s parks, forests, and refuges for future generations.
The WOW program, coordinated on the national level by the American Recreation Coalition and The Walt Disney Company, is funded by federal, local, and private organizations. It operates in Los Angeles; Phoenix; Tucson; Albuquerque; Denver; Washington, D.C.; and Salt Lake City and involves thousands of children each year.