George Henry Miller
Date of birth: 29.6.1918
Date of death: 14.2.1943
Regiment: Royal Air Force
Family information: Son of George Henry Miller and Martha Ann nee Wilkinson
Rank: Flight Officer
Service number: 50188
George Henry Miller was a Wireless Operator/Air Gunner and was based at RAF Rufforth. He was killed on 14th February 1943 and is commemorated at Jonkerbos War Cemetery Coll. Grave 12 E 2-5. Initially the crew were buried at Vento and moved to Jonkerbos after the war.
As a Pilot Officer he served with 158 Squadron at RAF Rufforth. He was a crew member of Handley Page Halifax bomber DT694 that took off at 6.18 in the evening as part of an operation involving 243 aircraft to bomb Cologne. At 8.30, on the return leg, his plane was attacked by a night fighter. All the aircraft lost were attacked from behind at close quarters by night fighters attacking in bright moonlight conditions. Four crew members were reputedly killed by anti aircraft fire before the plane crashed between Mechelen and Wittem, not far from Maastricht. Two managed to bale out and were taken prisoners of war.
He had previously served with 102 Squadron and as an NCO had been awarded the DFM, apparently the first man in Knottingley to receive such an award. On night of 19/20th July 1940 he played a big part in getting an aircraft back to RAF Bircham Newton in Norfolk on one engine after being hit over Bremen.
On another occasion with 158 Squadron, after a mission to bomb Turin, the aircraft developed engine trouble shortly after leaving the target. Thick ice on the wings prevented it from returning over the Alps, so with engine problems and fuel running low the navigator guided the pilot round the Alps and the plane returned safely on three engines. The navigator, a Sgt Kay, received a DFM for his role in this mission.
He was the uncle of Tom Murgatroyd Miller, another Knottingley casualty.
Pontefract & Castleford Express 29 October 1943 p3 (with 2 photos)
“UNCLE AND NEPHEW
[contd from Tom Murgatroyd Miller]
The Miller family have sustained a double blow, for it is learned that Stoker Miller’s uncle Pilot Officer G H Miller DFM who had been posted missing since February, must now be presumed killed. He had made 67 flights over enemy territory. Pilot Officer Miller was educated at the King’s School Pontefract, and before joining the Royal Air Force, in which he had five years’ service, he was a chemist’s assistant. He was awarded the DFM in 1942, and in recognition of the honour, members of the National Association of Discharged Soldiers and Sailors Club presented him with a gold watch.
George Henry Miller was born on 29th June 1918 and his birth was registered at Pontefract. He was the son of George Henry Miller and Martha Ann (nee Wilkinson), who married in the third quarter of 1896 and this was also registered at Pontefract.