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Closed Down for 72 Hours

Heroes Remember

Closed Down for 72 Hours

The tense moments going through a minefield, you don’t have time to think about morale when you’re going through a real minefield. For 72 hours the ship is all closed down, there’s no fresh air, you can hear a pin drop. For 72 hours, you try that at home. You try to stop everything at home and tip toe around in socks for two or three days. It will start to get to you a little bit. That was necessary but was it easy, heck no! We all know, we joke about it that war is 90% boredom and 10% terror and it’s true, you know, the time going through the minefield, that’s 10% maybe of the timeframe where you’re in terror. And when you see a missile shot down by the ship next door to you, the Gloucester, HMS Gloucester shot a missile out of the air, I can still remember talking to the captain who, he said, “Dusty, I was in my bunk and I hear this Vooosh !” and he said I went flying out of the ops room and said, “What was that?” “That was a missile, an anti-missile missile!” “Who’s missile?” he says, “Yours sir,” says the combat officer on duty and they fired a missile to take a missile out from Iraq and we were within three miles of that engagement. Lots of tense moments. The complaint was there were sometimes it was boring and sometimes you didn’t know what was going to happen next and the fear of that unknown of what was going to happen next like that engineer I said came up and said, “Are we under attack?” Like he’s scared to death. And you say, “Sorry, we should have told you down there in the engine room!”

Vice Admiral Miller speaks about the tense moments especially when going through a minefield.

Duncan “Dusty” Miller

Born in the United Kingdom, Duncan “Dusty” Miller immigrated to Canada in 1954. At the age of 15 and having a strong desire to join the military, Mr. Miller went to the recruiting centre but could not be accepted until 16 years of age. He then attended Bishop’s University in Lennoxville. During his career, Mr. Miller rose to the rank of Vice Admiral where he became the Naval Task Commander aboard HMCS Athabaskan during the Persian Gulf War. Vice Admiral Miller later retired from the military and now resides in Halifax, Nova Scotia.

Meta Data
Veterans Affairs Canada
February 27, 2016
Person Interviewed:
Duncan “Dusty” Miller
War, Conflict or Mission:
Canadian Armed Forces
Persian Gulf
Gulf War
HMCS Athabascan

Copyright / Permission to Reproduce

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