MILLARD J. KLEIN, LCDR, USN

From USNA Virtual Memorial Hall

Millard Klein '31

Date of birth: July 25, 1908

Date of death: October 9, 1943

Age: 35

Lucky Bag

From the 1931 Lucky Bag:


Loss

"Mike" was lost when USS Buck (DD 420) was torpedoed by U-616 and sank near Salerno, Italy, on October 9, 1944. He was the ship's commanding officer.

He has a memory marker in Tennessee. His wife, Jacqueline, was listed as next of kin; he was also survived by at least one child (daughter Kay Brigham).

Remembrances

His daughter, Kay, published a book about her father, "For Those Who Love, Time is Not: A World War II True Story of Unconquerable Love and Faith.".

Wartime Service

Some of Mike's exploits are recounted in Samuel Elliot Morrison's History of United States Naval Operations in World War II, Volume IX, Siciliy — Salerno — Anzio, January 1943 — June 1944.

Navy Cross

From Hall of Valor:

The President of the United States of America takes pride in presenting the Navy Cross (Posthumously) to Lieutenant Commander Millard Jefferson Klein, United States Navy, for extraordinary heroism and distinguished service in the line of his profession as Commanding Officer of the Destroyer U.S.S. BUCK (DD-420), during an attack on an enemy submarine while on convoy escort off the Island of Pantelleria in the Mediterranean Sea, on 3 August 1943. Contacting the hostile vessel which was preparing to attack the convoy, Lieutenant Commander Klein skillfully maneuvered for vigorous and aggressive action, depth charging the submarine and forcing her to the surface where the guns of the BUCK completed her destruction, resulting in the subsequent capture of prisoners. Lieutenant Commander Klein's inspiring leadership and the valiant devotion to duty of his command contributed in large measure to the outstanding success of this vital mission and reflects great credit upon the United States Naval Service.

General Orders: Bureau of Naval Personnel Information Bulletin No. 326 (May 1944)
Action Date: World War II
Service: Navy
Rank: Lieutenant Commander
Company: Commanding Officer
Division: U.S.S. Buck (DD-420)

Navy Directories & Officer Registers

The "Register of Commissioned and Warrant Officers of the United States Navy and Marine Corps" was published annually from 1815 through at least the 1970s; it provided rank, command or station, and occasionally billet until the beginning of World War II when command/station was no longer included. Scanned copies were reviewed and data entered from the mid-1840s through 1922, when more-frequent Navy Directories were available.

The Navy Directory was a publication that provided information on the command, billet, and rank of every active and retired naval officer. Single editions have been found online from January 1915 and March 1918, and then from three to six editions per year from 1923 through 1940; the final edition is from April 1941.

The entries in both series of documents are sometimes cryptic and confusing. They are often inconsistent, even within an edition, with the name of commands; this is especially true for aviation squadrons in the 1920s and early 1930s.

Alumni listed at the same command may or may not have had significant interactions; they could have shared a stateroom or workspace, stood many hours of watch together… or, especially at the larger commands, they might not have known each other at all. The information provides the opportunity to draw connections that are otherwise invisible, though, and gives a fuller view of the professional experiences of these alumni in Memorial Hall.

July 1931

Ensign, USS Roper

October 1931

Ensign, USS Roper

January 1932

Ensign, USS Roper

April 1932

Ensign, USS Roper

Others at or embarked at this command: CDR Franklin Van Valkenburgh '09 (Destroyer Division 5).

October 1932

Ensign, USS Roper

Others at this command: ENS Ernest Evans '31.

Others at or embarked at this command: CDR Franklin Van Valkenburgh '09 (Destroyer Division 5).

January 1933

Ensign, USS Roper

Others at this command: ENS Ernest Evans '31.

Others at or embarked at this command: CDR Franklin Van Valkenburgh '09 (Destroyer Division 5).

April 1933

Ensign, USS Roper

Others at this command: ENS Ernest Evans '31.

Others at or embarked at this command: CDR Franklin Van Valkenburgh '09 (Destroyer Division 5).

July 1933

Ensign, USS New York

Others at this command: LTjg Burton Doggett '24, ENS Lynne Quiggle '30, and ENS Vernon Hain '31.

October 1933

Ensign, USS New York

Others at this command: LTjg Burton Doggett '24, LTjg Lynne Quiggle '30, ENS Vernon Hain '31, and ENS William Kane '33.

April 1934

Ensign, USS San Francisco

Others at this command: 2LT Harold Bauer '30.

July 1934

Ensign, USS San Francisco

Others at this command: 2LT Harold Bauer '30.

October 1934

Lieutenant (j.g.), USS San Francisco

January 1935

Lieutenant (j.g.), USS San Francisco

April 1935

Lieutenant (j.g.), USS San Francisco

October 1935

Lieutenant (j.g.), USS San Francisco

January 1936

Lieutenant (j.g.), USS San Francisco

April 1936

Lieutenant (j.g.), USS San Francisco

July 1936

Lieutenant (j.g.), USS San Francisco

January 1937

Lieutenant (j.g.), USS San Francisco

Others at this command: LT Austin Behan '25.

April 1937

Lieutenant (j.g.), USS San Francisco

Others at this command: LT Austin Behan '25.

September 1937

Lieutenant (j.g.), USS San Francisco

Others at this command: LT Henry Batterton '23.

January 1938

Lieutenant (j.g.), USS San Francisco

Others at this command: LT Henry Batterton '23.

Others at or embarked at this command: LTjg George Bellinger '32 (Cruiser Scouting Squadron (VCS) 7).

June 1940

Lieutenant, gunnery officer, USS Benson

Others at this command: LT Hugh Black '26.

November 1940

Lieutenant, gunnery officer, USS Benson

Others at this command: LT Hugh Black '26.

April 1941

Lieutenant, gunnery officer, USS Benson

Others at this command: LT Hugh Black '26 and ENS Walter Louney '41.


Class of 1931

Millard is one of 51 members of the Class of 1931 on Virtual Memorial Hall.