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A People at War headerNational Archives and Records Administration
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Introduction
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Prelude to War
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New Roles
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Women Who Served
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The War in the Pacific
Mess Attendant First Class Doris Miller
The Sullivan Brothers
Robert Fredrick Read: Photographer
Joseph Timothy O'Callahan and The U.S.S. Franklin
spacerThe War in Europe
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Science Pitches In

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The War is Over
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Mess Attendant First Class Doris MillerDoris Miller is credited with shooting down several Japanese planes with a machine gun from the deck of the U.S.S. West Virginia during the attack on Pearl Harbor. When news of his actions reached the public, the African-American community saw him as their symbol of patriotism and pride. They wanted him to give speeches, named Boys Clubs after him, and started a write-in campaign to have President Roosevelt admit him to the Naval Academy. Although he did not attend the Naval Academy, Miller was decorated for bravery and continued to serve on active duty. Miller lost his life in the explosions and subsequent sinking of the Liscome Bay early on the morning of November 24, 1943.

 

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