Chuck Miller * * Pilot * * 361st TEWS

Capt. Miller, 1967      Lt. Col. (Ret.) Miller, 2013


Charles L. "Chuck" Miller graduated with a BS in Aeronautical Engineering from the University of Illinois in January 1961. He received an AFROTC commission upon graduation and entered Undergraduate Pilot Training (UPT) in April of ’61, training in the T-37 and T-33 jet trainers at Moody AFB, near Valdosta, GA. His first assignment was flying the TC-47 Navigation Trainer at O’Hare International Airport, Chicago, in support of Air Force Reserves where he spent 5 years and logged nearly 2,000 hours of flight time. 

In 1966, Chuck was selected as one of the original PHYLLIS ANN pilots. After ferrying an EC-47 across the Pacific, he served in Vietnam from March ’67 to February ’68, where he logged approximately 1,000 hours flying 115 combat reconnaissance missions. During his EC-47 assignment he was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross, seven Air Medals, and the Air Force Commendation Medal. 

After his tour in Vietnam, Chuck joined SAC as a KC-135Q tanker pilot at Beale AFB near Sacramento, CA, supporting the SR-71 “Blackbird” special operations. Following five years of SR-71 related operations, he was subsequently selected for a SPECAT (Special Category) assignment by HQUSAF for a NATO Exchange Pilot posting with the Canadian Armed Forces to develop and train the Canadians in aerial refueling using their newly acquired, hose-and-drogue modified, Boeing 707-300 series aircraft with the Canadian F-5 fighters. After 3-years in that assignment, he then was reassigned to the Oklahoma City Air Logistics Center (OCALC) in the C/KC-135 Logistics Management unit where he ultimately rose to the position of Weapon System [Logistic] Manager for the fleet of 750 aircraft plus the Presidential VC-135 and 707 fleet. He retired from the USAF in 1981 as a Command Pilot at the rank of Lt. Colonel. 

In his 20-year career, Lt. Col. Miller logged 6,821 flight hours, beginning with 299.5 hours in pilot training, and including 2,993 hours in five different models of the Gooney Bird. In later assignments, he added more than 3,500 additional hours in KC-135s and the Canadian CC-137s. 

Click here to read Chuck's very interesting account, which includes photographs, of the ferry flight across the Pacific and the remainder of his Vietnam tour.