USS Doris Miller – Ford-Class Aircraft Carrier

On Monday, January 20, 2020 – Martin Luther King Day – it was announced by Navy Acting Secretary Thomas B. Modly that the first aircraft carrier to be named after an African American, would be named after Doris Miller. 

Miller was the first African-American to receive the Navy Cross for valor, for his role in the attack on Pearl Harbor – December 7, 1941.

When the Japanese attacked Pearl Harbor, Miller headed a gun magazine, when a torpedo damage the magazine, Doris Miller carried the wounded to safety, then manned a .50 cal antiaircraft gun, for which he had no training (because he was African-American, and African-Americans were only allowed specific roles do to their skin color). Miller continued to fire on enemy aircraft until he ran out of ammunition.

The USS Doris Miller will be in service in early 2030, and will be the fourth carrier in the USS Ford-class of carriers.