Harry O. Miller – Helped Rescue Gambier Bay Survivors

Harry Miller - Photo

Harry O. Miller, 92, formerly of Loogootee and Pulaski County, died December 24, 2014. Harry was born April 28, 1922, in Pulaski County, to the late Dennis and Mary K. (Katie) Umphrey Miller. 

Mr. Miller faithfully served his country during World War II in the United States Navy in the Pacific Theatre. He was awarded the Bronze Star while serving aboard the PC 1119 for rendering medical aid in a 24-hour period to 183 souls rescued from the USS Gambier Bay (CVE 73), which had been sunk by enemy fire. He was honorably discharged as a Pharmacists Mate First Class in December of 1945. Upon completion of his service, Harry resumed his career as a funeral director which he started prior to his Navy service. 

Harry was the owner of Miller Funeral Home in Loogootee following the war until he retired in the early 1970’s. His retirement was short lived as he returned to his calling of funeral service at the Jordan Funeral Home, the Dorsey-Feeney Funeral Home, the Little & Sons Funeral Home in Beech Grove through the early 70’s until the late 80’s. In the early 1990’s, he joined the family at Flanner and Buchanan in Zionsville where he was an active funeral director caring for the community well past his 85th birthday. 2014 marked his 73rd year as a licensed funeral director and embalmer in the state of Indiana, a milestone that he was extremely proud of. 

Mr. Miller was a member of Zionsville United Methodist Church, the Indiana Funeral Directors Association; charter member and over 60-year member of VFW Post No. 1728 in Winamac; life member and past chaplain of American Legion Post 79 in Zionsville; and a life member of the Patrol Craft Sailors Association. Harry will be remembered for his giving spirit, his warm smile, hearty laugh, and his endless amount of tall tales. “Handsome Harry-O” will be fondly remembered and forever missed.

Harry is survived by his wife, Lois Arlene Torgerson Miller; his son, Timothy John Miller of Greenwood; his daughter, Rebecca Ann Miller of Indianapolis; his niece, Cathy Fahler Schmicker; his stepchildren, Thomas M. Torgerson and Kimberly Torgerson; and his foster grandchildren, Lauren and Brad Budrow. 

Harry was preceded in death by Irene Miller, sister, Glynn Miller Kindig, sister, Ira Miller, brother, Charles Miller, brother, Ida Ruth Miller Fahler, sister, Paul Miller, brother, and Loren Miller, brother. He was also preceded in death by Charles (Chuck) Fahler, nephew, Kelly K. Kindig, nephew, and Karen Kindig, niece. 

Thank you Harry for your service to our country and
for rescuing our Gambier Bay survivors.