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Dad's varied service in WW II


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#1 SemperParatus

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Posted 02 August 2018 - 09:26 AM

My father Chief Officer Adrian Edwards Millar was born in Roselle NJ on November 11, 1918, Armistice Day. His parents were both born in England and his life was spent back and forth across the Atlantic when they returned for family visits, funerals etc. In 1936 Dad went back to England with his Mother and became a cadet in the British Merchant Navy and was in the British Merchant Navy when the 39-45 War started up. He also served in the Canadian Merchant Navy, The United States Merchant Marine, and an outfit known as The Air Transport Command where he was a flight navigator in flying out of Presque Isle, Maine to various bases in Greenland. His next to last voyage at sea was aboard the S/S DENNISON VICTORY bound for Viet Nam.  He took ill aboard ship and was flown to a hospital in Nassau BWI where he died from the flu combined with pneumonia. For his war service he held the following medals. From England and Canada, The 39-45 Star, The Atlantic Star, The Canadian Volunteer Service Medal with overseas clasp, and the British 1939-45 War Medal. From the United States he held the Merchant Marine Combat Bar with Star. the Merchant Marine Defense Bar, The Merchant Marine Atlantic War Zone Bar, The Merchant Marine Mediterranean Middle East War Zone Bar, and The Merchant Marine Victory Medal. He also had an award certificate from Yugoslavia and a service medal from the State of New Jersey. I do not have much knowledge about his time with the Air Transport Command but I do not think he got any awards for that service. It certainly is interesting to see the various groups of honors and awards that some people got for their multi-national service.


Edited by SemperParatus, 02 August 2018 - 09:28 AM.


#2 Bob Hudson

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Posted 02 August 2018 - 10:45 AM

Did he run ferry services in Mass/ in  he 1960's?  There are several news stories about that in a couple of newpaper archives I use.

 

Here's a couple of crew lists from 1941 and 1947. 

 

milar1941.jpeg

milar1941a.jpeg

 

milar1947a.jpeg

milar1947.jpeg



#3 SemperParatus

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Posted 02 August 2018 - 11:13 AM

Yes he was President of Mass Bay Lines which ran commuter boats between Boston and Hull. Actually my sister and I also worked for the company as did my Mother. My first ship board job was deckhand on the various boats. Later I was off to Antarctica in the Coast Guard and in due course Mom and Dad gave up the boat service, my father went back to sea in the regular Merchant Marine. He was Chief Mate aboard the FLYING ENTERPRISE in 1947. That ship was to later make the news when she sank off the English coast, however my father was not aboard at that time. Thanks for the response.



#4 Bob Hudson

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Posted 02 August 2018 - 01:42 PM

Was he an officer in the ATC? It makes sense that he would be with his navigation experience. Depending on when and where he served with the AIR TRANSPORT COMMAND he could be eligible for a Victory Medal, Theater Medal, Air Medal. 



#5 SemperParatus

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Posted 04 August 2018 - 11:46 AM

Thank you for the information about my dad from Ancestry. There is one error that I would mention. The first ship mentioned the SINALOA is incorrect, this list is for the S/S/ GYPSUM QUEEN which my dad served in as 3rd Officer. This ship was torpedoed and sunk by the U-82 Siegfried Rollman commanding during the passage of convoy SC-42. Now regarding my father's service with the Air Transport Command I have very little to go on. I have his Navigator's Log Book which has entries dating from      11/15/42 through 8/16/43 flights appear to be from Presque Isle Maine to Goose Bay, Labrador, Mingan, Canada, Crystal 1 & II, Moncton, Gander, Boston, BW-8 and BW-1 .  Crystal 1 and ii as well as Bluie West 1 and 8 were I believe bases in Greenland. The log book is distributed by Pan American Navigation Service. Pasted inside the front cover of the log book is a medical certificate issued by the CAA. It gives dad's name and address and that is is for second class. It also states that this medical certificate should be kept with his Airman Certificate. I do not have his Airman's Certificate.  His address is given as the Oak Hotel at Presque Isle Maine. With the log book is a short snorter this one being a Canadian one dollar bill signed by various people. I do know that my Mother and Father had an Indian Scout motorcycle which was their main transportation until that day when a dog ran out in front of them causing them to crash into someone's basement. My father used to make extra money painting nebishes on motorcycles and I still have a few that he painted on card stock to show potential customers his work. I did find one other mention of my father and the ATC on Ancestry and that was a Clearance Declaration of Aircraft Commander for a flight from Boringuen P.R. to Miami, Florida dated Sept 20, 1942 He was listed under "American Crew of Three" Aircraft Number A-7835, Owned by Air Transport Command. I have a cabinet photo of my father wearing his ATC uniform with the ATC hat badge and also navigator's wings, which appear to be silver.

At one time we had the cap badge and also what I would call a bronze or brass half wing for navigator. Sadly those items vanished at a militaria show many years ago. I have been told that the records for my father would have been lost in a major fire in the records center some time ago. My dad never talked much about his wartime experiences obviously I would like to know more about his time with the ATC.


Edited by SemperParatus, 04 August 2018 - 11:54 AM.



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