Millsboro resident ‘Gus’ Gustafson receives tribute

January 11, 2018

Millsboro resident William “Gus” Gustafson was presented with a House of Representatives Tribute Dec. 13 at the Indian River Senior Center. The tribute was presented after he was honored to receive three Medals of Honor, the Navy Good Conduct Medal, Navy Expedition Medal and Navy Defense Medal from U.S. Sen. Tom Carper Nov. 21. 

Gustafson earned these medals aboard the USS MURRAY (DD 576), for operations near Cuba between Jan. 3, 1961 and Oct. 23, 1962. The US MURRAY WWII Destroyer was converted to the Anti-Submarine Warfare Group and was tasked for service during the Cuban Missile Crisis. 

Gustafson manned the torpedoes, ready to fire if need be. Russian ships eventually changed course and headed back to Russia. Gustafson assumed he didn’t receive the medals because the mission was classified for 50 years but he said, “It was classified, but everybody knew about it.”