AUSTIN (KXAN) — Allied troops landed on five beaches in the Normandy region of France 75 years ago today.
Their mission was to release Western Europe from the grip of the Nazis during World War II.
More than 160,000 Americans, Canadians and Brits went ashore on D-Day, and Texan George Bennett is one of them.
Bennett joined the Navy right after high school in June 1943 and trained with the medical corps in southern California.
“From San Diego I went to New York and picked up the LST, which is a landing ship,” said Bennet.
The Landing Ship Tank, LST, took Bennett to Normandy a year after he enlisted. Carrying supplies, trucks and tanks to the beaches, as well as bringing back the wounded.
Back and forth across the English Channel, time after time, “21 times,” according to Bennett, never knowing when a German plane might spot them.
“We were exposed constantly. So it was a fearful time,” explained Bennett.
It took time for Bennett to tell his kids about his service. He married and settled in San Antonio after leaving the Navy a few years after the war.
Bennett also served on a destroyer after his time on the LST at Normandy.
Now at the age of 94, he lives at Belmont Village a senior living community in West Lake Hills.