A beloved figure on the Lehigh Valley sports scene and a familiar face on local TV has passed away.
Ron "Punkin" Miller died Wednesday after a long battle with diabetes.
Miller, of Catasauqua, Lehigh Co., was a fixture in area sports for more than 50 years. He was a longtime baseball manager in the Blue Mountain League.
He also served for decades as the public address announcer at the Allentown Fair and worked 35 years with the Allentown Parks Department, retiring from the latter position in 1999.
For many years, Miller was also seen on the popular ABE Car Care television commercials, in which he spoke with a Pennsylvania Dutch accent and often used the line, "You dumb bunny," with his sidekick, Homer Schneck, played by John Donmoyer Sr.
He was a member of the Blue Mountain League Hall of Fame, along with his wife Sharon, and had been the manager of first the Allentown Orioles and then the Egypt Memorial Park-based Orioles franchise since 1972.
A 1959 Allentown High graduate, Miller was deeply ingrained in the local sports community.
He was associated with Allen High School as the PA announcer for football and basketball games and the basketball team’s scorekeeper for more than 30 years. He later worked one season of football games and nearly 10 seasons of both girls and boys basketball games at Parkland High School.
Miller was 71 years-old. His wife, Sharon, died in 1997. They were married for 23 years.
Services are scheduled for 10 a.m. Wednesday at the Stephens Funeral Home, 1335 W. Linden St., in Allentown. Call hours are 6:30-8:30 p.m. Tuesday and 9-10 a.m. Wednesday in the funeral home.
Miller will be laid to rest in the Fairview Cemetery in Catasauqua.