Bill Millin, 1923-2010
The piper who famously played on the beaches of Normandy during the first wave of the Allied Forces’ invasion on June 6, 1944, has died in Devon, England, at the age of 88 after a stroke.
A native of Glasgow, Millin’s playing on the beach was at the command of the famously forthright Lord Lovat, Commander of the 1st Special Service Brigade, which was one of the first to land on Sword Beach in 1944. Lovat ordered Millin to play to rally the troops, in defiance of an order that pipers should not play since they would be left vulnerable.
Millin’s courageous playing is commemorated at Normandy with a life-size statue donated by the people of Colleville-Montgomery, France, unveiled in June of this year.
His pipes, kilt, beret and knife are now in the National War Museum of Scotland.
To read a brief account of his experience in Millin’s own words, click here.