It’s December 15, 1944, and a light plane takes off from RAF Twinwood Farm in Bedfordshire, England. Aboard is Glenn Miller – big band maestro and one of America’s best-known musicians – with the pilot and one other passenger. The star is flying to liberated France to arrange a gig for the troops. But he will never reach France or play another concert.
You see, Miller’s plane was never found, and it’s a puzzle that’s resonated through the decades right up until the present. His disappearance has also generated various theories ranging from the outlandish to the plausible. We’ll come back to the details of this macabre mystery later, though. First, let’s find out more about Miller – a musician who was a legend in his own lifetime.
Alton Glen Miller was born on the first day of March, 1904 in Clarinda, Iowa. His father, Lewis Elmer Miller, had married Glenn’s mother, Mattie Lou Cavender, in 1898, and the future musician was the second of four children – three boys and a girl. And for some reason, Miller added an extra “n” to make “Glenn” later in life.