MILLER, PATRICK WAYNE

Name: Patrick Wayne Miller
Branch/Rank: Army/Pfc
Unit: 507th Maintenance Company, Fort Bliss, TX
Date of Birth/Age: 23
Home City of Record: Walter, Kansas
Date of Loss: March 23, 2003
Country of Loss: Iraq
Original Status: Prisoner of War
Aircraft/Vehicle/Ground: Ground


Other Personnel in Incident:

Killed in action:
Spc. Jamaal R. Addison, 22, of Roswell, Ga.,; Pfc. Howard Johnson II, 21, of Mobile, Ala.

Missing in action:
Master Sgt. Robert J. Dowdy, 38, of Cleveland, Ohio; Pvt. Ruben Estrella-Soto, 18, of El Paso; Spc. James M. Kiehl, 22, of Des Moines, Iowa; Pfc. Jessica D. Lynch, 19, of Palestine, W.Va.; Chief Warrant Officer Johnny Villareal Mata, 35, of El Paso; Pfc. Lori Ann Piestewa, 23, of Tuba City, Ariz.; Pvt. Brandon Ulysses Sloan, 19, of Bedford, Ohio; and Sgt. Donald Ralph Walters, 33, of Salem, Ore. 

Prisoners of war:
Spc. Edgar Adan Hernandez, 21, of Mission, Texas; Spc. Joseph Neal Hudson, 23, of Alamogordo, N.M.; Spc. Shoshana Nyree Johnson, 30, of El Paso; Pfc. Patrick Wayne Miller, 23, of Walter, Kan.; and Sgt. James Joseph Riley, 31, of Pennsauken, N.J.

Four more members of the unit were wounded, but managed to hold off or evade enemy forces until a Marine unit arrived to help evacuate them.

Source: Compiled by P.O.W. NETWORK from one or more of the following: raw data from U.S. Government agency sources, correspondence with POW/MIA families, published sources, interviews. April 2003.

Synopsis: A group of about 20 members of the 507th was ambushed near An Nasiriyah, Iraq on the fourth day of battle by civilian-clothed Iraqi forces. The soldiers were supplying the 3rd Infantry Division in its drive to Baghdad in central Iraq when they took a wrong turn. Broadcast pictures showed the convoy with a vehicle that appeared to have its tires shot out. Another was overturned and six more vehicles were destroyed according to media reports.

The 507th, which deployed with the 11th Air Defense Artillery Brigade, is not considered a combat unit, Defense Department officials said. Made up mostly of mechanics, the 507th keeps the diesel tanker trucks rolling, fixes generators and keeps the mechanical parts in good shape.

Miller was one of five prisoners of war whose picture was broadcast on Iraqi TV after the convoy was ambushed. His sister and half-brother both say he looked as good as possible even though Iraqi TV showed Miller answering questions in a shaky voice, his eyes darting between an interviewer and another person who couldn't be seen on camera.

According to media reports, Miller joined the Army just last summer hoping to pay off student loans. Miller lived in Valley Center, Kansas, where he worked for a welding company before joining the Army and moving to Fort Bliss. His wife Jessa, and 2 children (a 4-yr-old son and 7-month-old daughter) moved after his deployment to Park City, Kansas.

"It's hard to believe he has two babies over here and a loving wife," Kimberly Miller said. "But he does, and my prayers go out to them every night. I just hope he comes home," she said. "My brother's a fighter and always has been. I mean, he'd give up his life for everybody and now he's giving his life up for our country," Miller said in a CNN interview.

 

By Jim Garamone
American Forces Press Service
 
WASHINGTON, April 13, 2003 DoD officials identified the seven American prisoners of war found in northern Iraq
today as five members of the 507th Maintenance Company and two Apache helicopter pilots.
 
Two of the seven have suffered gunshot wounds but are in good shape, said Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld.
 
Officials woke up President Bush with the good news this morning. He held an impromptu press availability at the
White House. "Today is a great day for the families,  comrades, loved ones of the seven missing in action who are
free," he said.
 
The five soldiers from the 507th are Sgt. James J. Riley, 31, of Pennsauken, N.J.; Spc. Shoshana N. Johnson, 30, of
El Paso, Texas; Spc. Edgar A. Hernandez, 21, of Mission, Texas; Spc. Joseph N. Hudson, 23, of Alamogordo, N.M.; and
Pfc. Patrick W. Miller, 23, of Walter, Kan.
 
The two Apache pilots, Chief Warrant Officers David S. Williams and Ronald D. Young, are members of the 1st
Battalion, 227th Aviation at Fort Hood, Texas.
 
The 507th members had been captured when their convoy took a  wrong turn and was ambushed in Nasiriyah March 23. The
pilots had been captured near Karbala on March 23.
 
Marines moving up for an attack on Tikrit were tipped off to the presence of American POWs by Iraqis, said U.S.
Central Commander chief Army Gen. Tommy Franks on CNN's "Late Edition."
 
The Marines moved into the area and found the soldiers walking along a road near Samarra. They flew the former
POWs to an airfield in southern Iraq and transferred them to a C-130 transport plane. They were then moved to Kuwait
for medical treatment and an intelligence debriefing.
 
Rescued POW Army Pfc. Jessica Lynch, now being treated at Walter Reed Army Medical Center in Washington, D.C., is
also a member of the 507th, which is based in Fort Bliss, Texas. Lynch was rescued from an Iraqi hospital April 2.
 
The president said the United States will keep looking for American service members still missing in Iraq. "We pray
that they too will be safe and free one of these days," he said. But it's just a good way to start off the morning, to
have been notified that seven of our fellow Americans are going to be home here pretty soon in the arms of their
loved ones."