Scott Miller – Waist Gunner

Serial # 35275377: Miller, Emerson S –  Waist Gunner

Scott Miller – he preferred to use his middle name, although the Army insisted he used his first – was the crewman who was left behind in England when the others returned for their triumphant tour, even though he had flown more missions aboard the Memphis Belle than some others. The problem was, he had not made the ‘magic 25’.

He was born in 1919 to John and Ina Miller, the youngest of three children, brother Kermit and sister Ruby. Miller had enlisted in 1942 at Fort Hayes, Columbus, Ohio in February 1942. He was cleared for combat duty as an Air Gunner on May 16 1942.

‘At Walla Walla I was assigned to the crew of Lieutenant Richard G Hill. They then decided to send me to the Honeywell Corporation at Minneapolis for training on the automatic pilots controls, to be a maintenance man’.

While Miller was in Minneapolis Lieutenant Hill, and his crew took off on a routine training flight and flew into a mountain, killing all on board.

‘I went over to England on the Queen Mary, but I was not cut out to be a technician. Those damn things were driving me up the wall. I went to my Squadron Commander and told him I’d like to fly combat. He didn’t bat an eye. He seemed happy to hear it’.

By the time he was assigned to the Memphis Belle, – when Gene Adkins suffered frostbite on February 4 1943 – the aircraft had already flown ten missions.