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PILOT STORIES: Max Miller

Air Mail Service Began: July 1, 1918
Air Mail Service Ended: December 6, 1918
Pilot Rehired: April 8, 1919
Air Mail Service Ended: Sept 1, 1920
Assignment: Washington
  April 8, 1919 – Washington
  May 10, 1919 – Chicago
  July 1, 1919 – Cleveland
  Mar 1, 1920 – Bellefonte
  July 1, 1920 - Cleveland

Max Miller was born in Norway. As a child, Max was interested in aeronautics, making kites, model airplanes, and gliders. He was in the army in the Philippines, where he probably trained to be an aviator. Miller was the first pilot hired by Benjamin Lipsner for the Postal Service-operated Air Mail Service. Max was married to Daisy Thomas, who worked in Lipsner and Otto Praeger's office.

Did you know?On September 1, 1920, Miller left Hazelhurst air field for Cleveland at 5:30 am in a Junkers-Larsen aircraft with mechanic Gustav Reierson and 600 pounds of mail. Two hours later, the airplane was seen inexplicably only 20 miles away. It was flying low and the motor was cutting out and backfiring. Flames could be seen from the front of the airplane, and Reierson was tossing out mailbags. The flames engulfed the front of the airplane, and the aircraft nosed over and dove into the ground. The gas tanks exploded, blowing the wings off. Both men were killed in the explosion.

Click here to learn more about Max Miller.

Max Miller  
  Max Miller
Click on the photos to view a larger image.

(top left) Miller and Lipsner pathfinding September 5, 1918

(bottom right) Miller
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