MAJ Peter E. Benet was a potential VHPA member who died after his tour in Vietnam on 07/24/2016 at the age of 83.2
Weatherford, TX
Date of Birth 05/24/1933
Served in the U.S. Marine Corps
This information was provided by Pat Richardson

More detail on this person: Retired USMC Maj. Peter Edward Benet, 83, of Weatherford passed away Sunday evening, July 24, 2016, after a protracted illness. Service: Mass of Christian Burial at 2 p.m. Thursday at St. Stephen Catholic Chapel, 211 S. Main St., Weatherford. Interment: with military honors in Arlington National Cemetery, Arlington, Va. Visitation: 5 to 7 p.m. Wednesday at Galbreaith-Pickard Funeral Home, 913 N Elm St., Weatherford. Memorials: In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to either Wounded Warriors Project or Fisher House Foundation. Peter was born on May 24, 1933, in Cienfuegos, Cuba, to Edward and Concepcion Benet where Edward was serving with the American consulate. Pete's education took place first in Cuba and later in Texas, receiving his BA from St. Edward's University in Austin on May 30, 1954. The next day he married his sweetheart, Gayle Everett. Soon after, he enlisted in the Marine Corps and began to pursue his boyhood dream of flying. Pete would become a career helicopter pilot and was probably best known by those he transported, having served as Marine One pilot for Presidents Lyndon B. Johnson and Richard M. Nixon. He also had the privilege of picking up the crew and landing module of Apollo 11 after its return from our nation's first manned lunar voyage. His most appreciative passengers were the soldiers he extracted from combat throughout his two tours during the Vietnam War. He was decorated with the Silver Star Medal, the Distinguished Flying Cross, and the Navy Commendation Medal for his skill and courage in combat. The descriptions of the events of these episodes read far better than the action movies of today. After retirement from the Marine Corps in 1974, Pete and Gayle and their five children settled in Weatherford. He worked in the oil business and continued to fly as a hobby, often taking his family along for the ride. After he was grounded by his first heart attack in 1986, he continued to fly various types of model aircraft together with his sons and grandsons. He had a wonderful sense of humor and was at his best cracking jokes with his friends during a round of golf and traveling with Gayle in their RV. Pete cherished his family. His many grandchildren and great- grandchildren loved teasing, laughing and playing with their PawPaw. His 30-year survival after his first heart attack is a tribute to the superior health care he received and our family would especially like to thank Dr. Syed Nayyar Shah, Dr. M. Iqbal Mughal, and the numerous other physicians, nurses, therapists, and assistants who have contributed to his care. Semper fidelis. In addition to his parents, Peter was preceded in death by his sister, Mary Stephenson, and his nephew, Michael Stephenson. Survivors: Pete is survived by his wife, Gayle; children, Stephen Edward Benet (Geneva), Michael William Benet (Trudy), Richard Brian Benet (Beverly), Julie Lynn Taylor (Stephen) and Karen Susan Howell (Stephen); 11 grandchildren; nine great-grandchildren; his brother-in-law, Stanley Stephenson of Pittsburgh; and five nieces and nephews.

Published in Star-Telegram on July 27, 2016

This information was last updated 07/27/2016

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