Glenn Miller, famed dance orchestra leader, conducted Army Air Force bands from the time he entered the service in 1942 until he went missing Dec. 15, 1944, and was never seen again.
Miller was born on a farm in Clarinda, Iowa, but moved around the Midwest attending grade school in Nebraska and then Missouri and later high school in Colorado. He worked his way through the University of Colorado by playing trombone in a college band. Later he was trombonist with Ben Pollack's orchestra, in which Benny Goodman played clarinet and Gene Krupa attacked the drums.
He skyrocketed to fame with his own orchestra because of his distinctive arrangements, particularly of his theme song, "Moonlight Serenade." Hits such as "In the Mood," "Chattanooga Choo Choo" and "Pennsylvania 6-5000" are still played today, reminding people of Miller's influence. Superstars such as Louis Armstrong, Frank Sinatra and Mel Torme loved his music.
Miller also appeared in movies produced by Paramount Pictures and 20th Century Fox.
At the time of his disappearance Miller was married to the former Helen Burger. The couple had no children of their own but had adopted two in the early 1940s: Steven and Jonnie.