On February 27, 1968 Captain (then Commander) Milius was piloting an OP-2E observation aircraft on an armed reconnaissance mission over Laos.
While conducting his mission, the aircraft was hit by anti-aircraft artillery fire. Commander Milius elected to remain at the controls of his badly damaged aircraft, maintaining stable flight, and ordered his seven crew members to bail out, all of whom were rescued. Just before the aircraft crashed, Commander Milius is believed to have bailed out, but rescuers were unable to locate him. Captain Milius was declared Missing In Action (MIA). On April 26, 1978, his status was revised to Presumed Killed In Action (PKIA). He was posthumously awarded the Navy Cross.
Current USS Milius
USS Milius (DDG 69) was laid down 8 August 1994, christened on 25October 1995 and commissioned at Ingalls shipyard on November 23, 1996 with Cmdr. D. E. Eisold as the commanding officer.
In May 1998 USS Milius departed Naval Station San Diego, Calif., for its maiden deployment. In August the Milius participated in Tactical Evaluation Exercise 98-1. In November USS Milius returned to San Diego after her six-month deployment in the U.S. 5th and 7th Fleet Areas of Responsibility (AoR).
March 16, 1999 The guided-missile destroyer got underway for sea trials. In May the Milius participated in JTFEX as part of opposition forces. In June 2000 USS Milius left her homeport for a scheduled five-month western Pacific deployment.
In April 2001 DDG 69 was underway for sea trials in SOCAL Op. Area. In May the guided-missile destroyer arrived at NWS Seal Beach for ordnance onload. She was underway for USS Carl Vinson BG's JTFEX as part of opposition forces from June 6-11. In September the Milius departed San Diego in support of Operation Noble Eagle.
In January 2002 USS Milius was underway for CART II in the SOCAL Op. Area. In July USS Milius participated in Composite Training Unit Exercise (COMPTUEX) off the coast of southern California. In October she was underway for Joint Task Force Exercise (JTFEX). In November USS Milius departed Naval Station San Diego as part of USS Constellation (CV 64) Battle Group for a scheduled deployment in support of Operation Southern Watch (OSW) and Operation Enduring Freedom (OEF). In December DDG 69 entered the Arabian Gulf and commenced Maritime Interdiction Operations (MIO).
In March 2003 USS Milius launched Tomahawk Land Attack Missiles (TLAMs) in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom. By March 26, the guided-missile destroyer launched 28 Tomahawk Land Attack Missiles (TLAMs). On June 2, USS Milius returned to homeport after a seven-month combat deployment.
From May 3-7 2004 the Milius was underway for Group Sail operations with the Destroyer Squadron (DESRON) 7. In May USS Milius supported Operation Northern Edge, as part of USS John C. Stennis (CVN 74) CSG. She was underway for JTFEX from November 3-13. In December USS Milius departed San Diego for a scheduled deployment in the U.S. 5th and 7th Fleet AoR, with the USS Bonhomme Richard ESG-5, in support of the Global War on Terrorism - Operation Unified Assistance and Operation Iraqi Freedom.
On 6 June 2005 USS Milius returned to homeport after six-month deployment.
January 22, 2007 The Milius participated in Expeditionary Strike Group Integrated Training (ESGINT) exercise in preparation for her deployment with the USS Bonhomme Richard. In April USS Milius departed for a scheduled deployment with the BHR ESG-5. In August DDG 69 conducted Maritime Interdiction Operations (MIO) in the Arabian Gulf.
In February 2009 USS Milius joined Combined Task Force (CTF) 152 for a five-day exercise Stake Net. In July USS Milius returned to San Diego after a seven-month deployment in the U.S. 5th and 7th Fleet Areas of Responsibility. In November the guided-missile destroyer participated in a strike group sustainment exercise (SUSTAINEX), as part of USS John C. Stennis (CVN 74) Carrier Strike Group.
In May 2010 USS Milius departed for an independent deployment to the 5th Fleet AoR with a primary focus on Ballistic Missile Defense. On December 16, USS Milius returned to homeport after her seven-month deployment.
In October 2011 USS Milius pulled into San Francisco, Calif., to participate in Fleet Week 2011.
On January 11, 2012 USS Milius departed San Diego for a scheduled independent deployment in the U.S. 5th and 7th Fleet AoR. On September 11, USS Milius returned to Naval Base San Diego after an eight-month deployment.