Aviation Mysteries: 10 Strangest Aircraft Disappearances in History

8. Glenn Miller’s Norseman C-64

glenn-miller-disappearance (Images: USAFUSAF Museum, public domain)

Glenn Miller was one of the premiere big band performers of the 1940s. If you remember your grandparents listening to any kind of big band music, it was probably him. He was more than just a performer, though, he was a patriotic American. Miller already had a staggeringly successful career when he decided to enlist in the Army in 1941, determined to do his duty for his country even though he was unlikely to have been regularly drafted into service because of his age.

Once he had enlisted in the Army Air Corps, he was promoted to Captain and later to Major. For part of his service, Miller organized an orchestra and would perform for the troops as well as serve alongside them. It was en route to one of these performances that he and his plane disappeared.

Miller was heading from England to France; he left as a passenger on a Norseman C-64 plane and was never heard from again.

There’s been a number of theories about just what happened to Miller’s plane, but nothing has ever been proven. According to one recent theory, poor visibility forced the pilot to fly low across the English Channel; engines froze, and it was only a matter of seconds before the plane hit the water. Other theories suggest that the plane was hit by friendly fire that happened when bombers couldn’t complete a run and needed to jettison their bombs over water before landing… and Miller’s plane was in the way.

There’s also been a wide range of pretty bizarre theories around his disappearance, too, and some suggest that he not only made it to France but died from wartime injuries in a field hospital much later, while others claim he made it to France and died later in a bordello. Other theories have him working as an Allied spy that was ultimately targeted by a German assassin, while still another theory says that Miller – and his plane – were taken away by aliens. While that’s pretty unlikely, 70 years of searching military history hasn’t led to any more concrete information about what happened to Miller or his plane.


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About the author: Debra Kelly




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