Rob graduated from Wheaton High School in Harrisonburg and attended one year at the University of Iowa before making a commitment to join the Army in 2003. He initially had plans in place to attend the Naval Academy, but that changed when Rob learned he was colorblind. Although he couldn’t pursue a career in the Navy, Rob found a solid match when he learned the Army Special Forces would allow you to enlistment as a trainee right off the street.
The second of eight children to Phil and Maureen Miller, Rob’s sheer desire to serve his country was in his blood. Maureen said, “I think there were several factors that pushed Rob to join the Army, one was his sense of adventure, another one was his sense of the importance of military service. My husband had been in the service, both of our fathers had been in the military service, some of our relatives had served in Korea, World War II and World War I. Both my husband and I had ancestors who had served in the civil and even someone who served in the Revolutionary War. It’s something that runs in our family.”
Growing up, Rob had a strong desire and ability to perform competitively in gymnastics. Maureen remembers when his initial interest was sparked to be a gymnast,” When he was very young, 2-years-old, we would have him at playgrounds, we noticed he was unusually flexible and very good at climbing up playground equipment, a number of people would be amazed that someone was so small could do so much. I signed him up at 3-years-old.”
As Rob got older, he was known to spend hour upon hour each day in the gym perfecting his skills. At one point he even worked at a local gym to pay for lessons and because of his patience and dedication, he was asked to work with children who had autism. While building his gymnastics skills, Rob also learned to play a couple of instruments.
Mary Miller, Rob’s sister said you never knew what to expect with him, “Growing up with Rob was a lot of fun… one day we would have a tuba, the next day we would have a pommel horse in the garage.”
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