Alex Bennett was born on October 31, 1986, in Christiansburg, Virginia. He enlisted in the Washington Army National Guard as Rifleman with Company A, 1st Battalion of the 161st Infantry Regiment on March 26, 2004, and attended basic training at Fort Benning, Georgia, from June to August 2004. Pvt Bennett attended Advanced Individual Training as an Infantryman at Fort Benning from July to August 2006, and then transferred to the U.S. Army Reserve in March 2007. He next attended CH-47 Chinook helicopter repairer training at Fort Eustis, Virginia, from March to July 2007, and then served as a CH-47 flight engineer and crew chief with 7th Battalion of the 158th Aviation Regiment in Washington and Kansas from July 2007 until he was killed in action aboard a CH-47 in Afghanistan on August 6, 2011. During this time, SPC Bennett deployed to Iraq in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom from February to December 2009, and to Afghanistan in support of Operation Enduring Freedom from March 2011 until his death on August 6. He was posthumously promoted to Sergeant with date of rank of August 6, 2011. Alexander Bennett was buried at Arlington National Cemetery.
His Bronze Star Medal Citation reads:
For meritorious service while assigned to Company B, 7th Battalion, 158th Aviation Regiment, during Operation Enduring Freedom. Specialist Bennett’s commitment contributed to our Nation’s continual war on terrorism and his actions represented his dedication to the security of the United States of America. His sincere desire to bring peace and stability to a foreign nation is an example of what all American Soldiers strive to achieve. No greater honor can be demonstrated by his ultimate sacrifice, and he will be forever remembered for his actions. Specialist Bennett’s duty performance and selfless service are in keeping with the highest traditions of military service and reflect great credit upon himself, the United States Forces – Afghanistan, and the United States Army.
His Meritorious Service Medal Citation reads:
For exceptionally meritorious service as a CH47D Flight Engineer in B Company, 7th Battalion, 158th Aviation Regiment, 11th Aviation Command. Specialist Bennett demonstrated commitment to excellence, strong initiative, and outstanding professionalism. His courage, sense of duty, and selfless service directly contributed to the overall success of the unit’s mission. The significant achievements and devotion to duty of Specialist Bennett reflect great credit upon him, his command, and the United States Army.