Death of Royal British Legion president will leave a ‘huge hole’ in Letchworth

George Miller, president of Letchworth Royal British Legion, with his daughter, Jackie Miller

George Miller, president of Letchworth Royal British Legion, with his daughter, Jackie Miller - Credit: Archant

The death of the president of the Letchworth branch of the Royal British Legion will leave a ‘huge hole’ in the town, the chairman has said.

George Miller, who fought in Italy and North Africa during the Second World War, was president until his death earlier this month.

The 91-year-old was a committed member of the legion and was a dedicated supporter of the local poppy appeal come rain or shine, right up until his death.

The only year he missed was when he had a stroke five years ago, but even that didn’t stop him. He continued running the appeal in his wheelchair in a designated spot outside Tesco on the Grange Estate.

Branch chairman Joan Ellis said: “Everyone loved him to bits. He had such a big heart. Everybody was so proud when they were with him and able to talk to him.

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“He was a lovable, wonderful man. He was always involved in the poppy appeal. If it was raining they’d wheel him inside to keep him dry.”

George, of Eastern Way, was in the Royal Artillery and served in the Eighth Army for six years.

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He moved to Letchworth with his family in 1962, and loved the area as the rural setting reminded him of his upbringing on a farm in Kent.

His daughter Jackie said: “He was just gorgeous, a really lovable man, just so caring.

“Me and my mum June are still trying to come to terms with his death. He was always chuckling at these terrible jokes and puns that he would tell.

“You’d have to laugh, he had this big smile.”

George’s funeral will be held at 12.30pm on Monday, March 9, in St George’s Church.

Joan added: “We want everyone from the legion to come to his funeral, no matter what branch, to give him the send off he deserves.”

The death comes soon after that of Ray Cole, a war veteran nicknamed the Letchworth poppy man, who died in December after suffering bowel cancer.

Mr Cole had been Letchworth’s Poppy Appeal organiser since 2006 after a long stint as a collector, helping raise well over £200,000.

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