Unsung Hero Doris Miller

Unsung Hero Doris Miller
Posted on 02/24/2021
Doris Miller

War hero Doris ‘Dorie’ Miller was a United States Navy cook third class and served aboard the battleship West Virginia. He was one of the few navy seamen able to man his station during the surprise attack on Pearl Harbor. Before he got to his gun, he helped several sailors and his mortally wounded Captain to safety. It is believed that he shot down 3–5 enemy planes using an anti-aircraft machine gun for which he had no training while his ship was engulfed in flames. Once he ran out of ammo, he helped carry his wounded shipmates to safety. For his heroic action, Admiral Chester Nimitz personally awarded him the Navy Cross, the Navy’s equivalent of the Congressional Medal of Honor. He is the first African American to receive this award. During the battle in the Gilbert Islands, Miller was killed while serving aboard the aircraft carrier Liscome Bay when it was attacked and sunk on November 24, 1943. He will always be known and remembered for his heroism. The Navy has named three ships after him.

Students were impressed how Dorie acted outside his role as shipboard servant and going well above and beyond the call of duty.

Doris Miller