Submitted by Dick Martin
I first learned of Glenn Miller at a very young age. I think the reason it sticks in my mind was the manner of his death, “lost at sea in a flight that vanished over the English Channel,” in December of 1944 in a flight to Paris, France. At my young age, the words “vanished” and “lost at sea” were very scary. At the time, the big band sound was very popular with young people as the Beatles and Beach Boys Era was just around the corner. Glen Miller was the most significant musical persona of the big band era.
Glenn Miller was born on March 1, 1904 in Clarinda, Iowa, but moved to North Platte, Nebraska and Missouri before settling in Fort Morgan, Colorado where he attended high school and honed his talent on the trombone. Miller enrolled at the University of Colorado but spent most of his time at auditions and playing any gigs he could get.
Revered for his jazzy swing-style music, Miller and his band created radio programs that proved highly popular with American audiences through the 1940s. My parents favorite song was “In the Mood” one of Miller’s big hits. Other of his hits were Chattanooga Choo Choo, Moonlight Serenade, American Patrol and many others.
Miller formed a military band during WWII and exhausted himself entertaining the troops throughout Europe. He and his military band had planned Christmastime concerts for frontline troops when Miller’s plane was lost over the English Channel in very bad weather in his trip to Paris for the concerts. There have been a variety of conspiracy theories over the years considering his disappearance that have been mostly debunked.
Glenn Miller was lost at sea on December 15, 1944. To learn more about Glenn Miller’s life, see a new biography “Glenn Miller” by Dennis M Spragg.
Taken from Wikipedia and the February 2018 issue of World War II magazine.