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 Doris “Dorie” Miller
Cenotaph

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Doris “Dorie” Miller Famous memorial

Birth
Waco, McLennan County, Texas, USA
Death
24 Nov 1943 (aged 24)
At Sea
Cenotaph
Waco, McLennan County, Texas, USA
Memorial ID
206388722 View Source

World War II United States Navy Sailor. He served in the United States Navy during World War II, rising from the rating of Mess Attendant to Petty Officer, Ship’s Cook Third Class. He was the first African-American to receive the Navy Cross, which was awarded to him for his heroism during the Japanese naval attack on Pearl Harbor, Hawaii on December 7, 1941. A fullback on his high school football team, he enlisted September 16, 1939 to travel and earn money for his family. He was trained as a mess attendant at the Naval Training Station, Norfolk, Virginia, and was serving aboard the battleship “USS West Virginia” (BB-48) when the Japanese attacked. His Navy Cross citation reads, "For distinguished devotion to duty, extraordinary courage and disregard for his own personal safety during the attack on the Fleet in Pearl Harbor, Territory of Hawaii. While at the side of his Captain on the bridge, Miller, despite enemy strafing and bombing and in the face of a serious fire, assisted in moving his Captain, who had been mortally wounded, to a place of greater safety, and later manned and operated a machine gun directed at enemy Japanese attacking aircraft until ordered to leave the bridge." The medal was awarded to him personally on May 27, 1942 by Admiral Chester W. Nimitz, who was the Commander-in-Chief of the United States Pacific Fleet. He was later assigned to the newly constructed escort aircraft carrier “USS Liscome Bay” (ACV/CVE-56) and was on board during the seizure of Makin and Tarawa Atolls in the Gilbert Islands. On November 24, 1943, a single torpedo struck and sunk the carrier, killing 646 of the 918 personnel on board; Miller was among those whose bodies were never recovered. In his honor, the “USS Miller” (FF-1901), a “Knox”-class frigate, was commissioned on June 30, 1973. His name is listed on the Court of the Missing Panels in the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific in Honolulu, Hawaii. In 2007 a biography of him was published by historian Bill O'Neal titled “Doris Miller: Hero of Pearl Harbor”.

World War II United States Navy Sailor. He served in the United States Navy during World War II, rising from the rating of Mess Attendant to Petty Officer, Ship’s Cook Third Class. He was the first African-American to receive the Navy Cross, which was awarded to him for his heroism during the Japanese naval attack on Pearl Harbor, Hawaii on December 7, 1941. A fullback on his high school football team, he enlisted September 16, 1939 to travel and earn money for his family. He was trained as a mess attendant at the Naval Training Station, Norfolk, Virginia, and was serving aboard the battleship “USS West Virginia” (BB-48) when the Japanese attacked. His Navy Cross citation reads, "For distinguished devotion to duty, extraordinary courage and disregard for his own personal safety during the attack on the Fleet in Pearl Harbor, Territory of Hawaii. While at the side of his Captain on the bridge, Miller, despite enemy strafing and bombing and in the face of a serious fire, assisted in moving his Captain, who had been mortally wounded, to a place of greater safety, and later manned and operated a machine gun directed at enemy Japanese attacking aircraft until ordered to leave the bridge." The medal was awarded to him personally on May 27, 1942 by Admiral Chester W. Nimitz, who was the Commander-in-Chief of the United States Pacific Fleet. He was later assigned to the newly constructed escort aircraft carrier “USS Liscome Bay” (ACV/CVE-56) and was on board during the seizure of Makin and Tarawa Atolls in the Gilbert Islands. On November 24, 1943, a single torpedo struck and sunk the carrier, killing 646 of the 918 personnel on board; Miller was among those whose bodies were never recovered. In his honor, the “USS Miller” (FF-1901), a “Knox”-class frigate, was commissioned on June 30, 1973. His name is listed on the Court of the Missing Panels in the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific in Honolulu, Hawaii. In 2007 a biography of him was published by historian Bill O'Neal titled “Doris Miller: Hero of Pearl Harbor”.

Bio by: Beth Painter

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  • Maintained by: Find a Grave
  • Originally Created by: Michael Hague
  • Added: 20 Jan 2020
  • Find a Grave Memorial ID: 206388722
  • Find a Grave, database and images (https://www.findagrave.com/memorial/206388722/doris-miller: accessed ), memorial page for Doris “Dorie” Miller (12 Oct 1919–24 Nov 1943), Find a Grave Memorial ID 206388722, citing Doris Miller Memorial Park, Waco, McLennan County, Texas, USA; Maintained by Find a Grave .