Cover photo for Lester E. Bennett's Obituary
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1932 Colonel (Ret.) Lester E. Bennett 2024

Lester E. Bennett

August 15, 1932 — February 18, 2024

As you read this, Les is at home with his Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. His new home is not one he built with his own hands, or by his own good deeds, but a permanent home in heaven prepared by God for all who come to Him. Romans 3:22-24. Les testified to this with confidence because on his 13th birthday, August 15, 1945 (also VJ Day), he accepted Christ as his Savior. Les’s life was changed forever. It didn’t mean he lived a life of perfection, but he sought to please God and that governed how he lived.  

Les was born during the great depression to William Howard and Sona Dell Bennett in Anjean, West Virginia, a small coal mining town.   From the time he was twelve years old, he wanted to attend the United States Military Academy. He joined the Virginia National Guard while still in high school and attended Virginia Tech for one year before receiving a Senatorial appointment to West Point with the class of 1957. The morning of June 4, 1957 marked the beginning of his military career. That evening he married his beloved wife, Ann (Surico) and their Army life together began.   

The motto at West Point is Duty, Honor, Country. These three words defined who Les wanted to be in life personally, and as an officer and soldier. He wanted to live for Christ.

In military terms, Les had a distinguished career. He loved serving in the military. In his words, “Attending West Point opened the door to levels of responsibility and accomplishment unimaginable to me growing up in the depression in a small coal mining town. I quickly discovered that leading soldiers is an affair of the heart and took delight in training, building teams and developing capable leaders.”

Les accomplished much in his 30 years of military service, but he would be the first to tell you that it was not anything he accomplished, no medal he earned, no promotion, no victory on or off the battlefield that was what he lived for. He lived for Jesus Christ, and his ultimate victory is due to what Christ accomplished on the cross for him.   

Les leaves behind his wife of 67 years, Ann, their four children, Tom (Kari) Bennett, Susan (Rick) Burby, Janie Bennett and Tim Bennett; four grandchildren, Will Burby, Ethan Burby, Nicholas Bennett and Ashleigh (Stephen) Zeller, his siblings, Phyllis Gilchrist, Lloyd (Daisy) Bennett, Esther (Dave) Shreve, Dolby (Rhonda) Bennett, as well as cherished nieces and nephews.

He is predeceased by his parents, William Howard and Sona Dell Bennett, sister, Helen Murray, and granddaughter, Anne-Marie Burby.

Memorial Service will be held on March 23 at 10:00 AM, Linworth Baptist Church.  

Private burial with full military honors will be held at a future date at the United States Military Academy, West Point Cemetery, NY.   

In lieu of flowers, donations in his memory can be made to the Officer’s Christian Fellowship, 4050 Lee Vance Drive, Suite 330, Colorado Springs, CO 80918.

To order memorial trees in memory of Lester E. Bennett, please visit our tree store.

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Saturday, March 23, 2024

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