Eldon K. Miller was born in Yates Center, Kansas, on May 20, 1919. He
graduated from Yates Center High School in 1937. Miller served in the
United States Army Air Corps from 1942 to 1945, attaining the rank of
On January 13, 1953, he began Highway Patrol Recruit School in Hutchinson and was assigned as a Driver's License Examiner in Lawrence. He was promoted to Trooper in August of 1953, and began field duties in Douglas County.
Miller was transferred to the new Highway Patrol district in Mankato in 1955. He was promoted to Class A Trooper in 1956 and transferred to the Patrol's Kansas Turnpike detail at Topeka. In 1957, he transferred to Arkansas City and later transferred to Columbus in 1964. In 1965, Miller was transferred to Kansas City, where he was appointed to the Metro Squad. He was promoted to Sergeant in 1967 and continued his duties in Kansas City.
On January 19, 1968, Miller responded to a large manhunt for two
suspects who robbed $13,000 from the Metcalf State Bank in Overland
Park. During the getaway, the suspects shot and wounded an Overland Park
motorcycle officer near 71st and Conser. After the getaway vehicle was
found abandoned near an apartment complex in the 8400 Block of Newton,
officers formed a perimeter and searched each apartment. When officers
went to enter one of the apartments at 2:41 p.m., gunfire erupted
through the door.
Sergeant Miller was outside the apartment and
jumped into a nearby Johnson County sheriff's car. He began to drive
the patrol car up to the windows outside the apartment to provide cover
for officers who were pinned down by gunfire. As he was moving the car,
gunfire erupted from one of the windows striking, him in the head. His
wounds were immediately fatal.
Sergeant Miller was 48 years old
at the time of his death and served the citizens of Kansas for more
than 15 years. He was the first member of the Patrol to be killed by