Longtime Blue Angels master tailor and Pensacola resident Samuel "Sam" George Miller died Friday at age 84.
Miller was renowned around the military scene in Pensacola, and according to his daughter Sabina O'Neil, he was well known for his business tailoring women's military uniforms.
"He probably made his biggest impact when he opened his business," O'Neil told the News Journal. "His business name was Feminine Flair and is now the Sewing Box."
Miller spent the past four decades designing flight suits for the Blue Angels flight demonstration team. His original flight suits, along with historical replicas, can be seen on display at the National Naval Aviation Museum's Silver Eagles Exhibit, or soaring through the skies when worn by Blue Angels pilots.
O'Neil said her father had a heart for women in the military, which is what led to his sewing business and his avid yearning for a female Blue Angels jet pilot — which he got to see just months before his death.
"He touched (the Blue Angels') lives," O'Neil said. "I'm so happy they actually had a female pilot, because he wanted that so badly."
Miller had the chance to see U.S. Navy Lt. Amanda Lee be named the first-ever female F-18 fighter pilot on the Blue Angels on July 25.
Miller "kind of, sort of" retired in 2019, according to O'Neil, after he finished Cmdr. Brian Kesselring's flight suit, the man who led the Blue Angels during the 2020 and 2021 seasons.
His stitching protégé, Jellie "Candy" Whitehurst, took over The Sewing Box in his retirement, adding Jellie B to the name.
Whitehurst told the News Journal that Miller "was a great man" who was beloved by the community.
"He was a legendary tailor here in Pensacola," Whitehurst told the News Journal. "The Blue Angels loved him."
The retired Navy master chief petty officer not only loved his career creating uniforms for women in the military, but he also loved his passions and hobbies as a historian, genealogist and general artistic creator.
O'Neil said Miller especially loved his hometown in Somerset County, Pennsylvania, writing a historical novel about it called "A Place Called Hexie."
"For his hobby part, he did a lot of custom design, so he would design all kinds of swimwear," O'Neil told the News Journal. "So many girls would come to him for bathing suit contests in Pensacola, and all these bikini contests and swimsuit contests they would come to him to design."
Miller had many hobbies and passions, and he was well-known to many in the Pensacola community. However, in his death you will get to see a piece of him in any patch he ever stitched for a Blue Angels flight suit.
Benjamin Johnson can be reached at email@example.com or 850-435-8578
This article originally appeared on Pensacola News Journal: Blue Angels flight suit tailor Samuel George Miller dies at 84