In his newly published autobiography, “Son of a Gambling Man,” former Gov. Bob Miller recounted several brushes with some of the gaming industry’s founders (and reputed organized crime members) while growing up as the offspring of casino executive Ross Miller.
He also had some brushes with stardom.
Ross Miller was a part-owner and the general manager of the Riviera, which allowed his son the opportunity to work as a lifeguard at the Strip resort’s pool during the summer months.
One afternoon in 1963, a singer who was serving as the opening act for Liberace in the Riviera showroom was frolicking in the pool with her new husband, an up-and-coming actor.
Public displays of affection, even what would be considered G-rated today, were frowned upon, Miller recalled in the book. The lifeguards asked the couple to tone down the kissing.
A day later, the singer asked that a pool lounge be brought up to her room so she could relax on her balcony. Miller carried the lounge up the room.
So who were the “strong-minded and brassy” 21-year-old singer and her husband Miller met at the Riviera pool?
Barbra Streisand and Elliot Gould.
Five years later, Streisand would win the Academy Award for Best Actress for her starring role in the movie “Funny Girl” and become an international performing icon.
Miller will have several book signings for “Son of a Gambling Man” in Carson City and Reno the week of March 25.