Neal Miller

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James Neal Miller (born October 3, 1932 in Corner; died July 5, 2002 in Birmingham) was a radio deejay for WSGN-AM and the host of The Sergeant Jack Show on WBMG-42.

Miller was one of four children born to Glenn Miller and the former Clara Tingle of Corner. He began working in radio at WGWD-AM while he was still in high school in Gadsden before coming to Birmingham. As one of WSGN's "Good Guys", he helped man the station's "Sky Castle" broadcast booth and cultivated a following among area teens.

In 1965 he moved to television and was tapped to host a children's show developed around airings of Dick Tracy cartoons. Sponsor Jack Caddell worked with Jefferson County Sheriff Mel Bailey to create the character of "Sergeant Jack." Miller was actually sworn in as a deputy sheriff in order to be able to wear a uniform on the show and at public appearances. The 6'-7" host played straight man to an increasingly zany cast of puppet characters and genially welcomed guests such as The Monkees and Leonard Nimoy to the program.

The Sergeant Jack Show outlasted all other locally-produced children's programs and continued, in diminished form, to June 1982. Afterward Miller took a sales job with the Norris Sales Company. Miller also continued to appear on radio, and sang with a gospel quartet.

Miller died from a heart attack at age 69 and is buried at New Horizon Memorial Gardens in Dora. He was survived by his wife, Patsie, and seven children.

References

  • Hollis, Tim (October 30, 2005) "Sgt. Jack", Chapter 6 of The Magic City Kids' Shows on Birmingham Rewound

External links