Louisiana Legislature Celebrates Local War Hero’s 100th Birthday
BATON ROUGE, La. — During the Second Special Session of 2020, Senator Hewitt authored Senate Concurrent Resolution (SCR13) to recognize Mr. Eugene Lussan as one of Louisiana's finest sons, with a special commendation measure for his achievements as a veteran and in celebration of his one-hundredth birthday.
“We are so proud of all that he has done. Men like "Mr. Gene" are the reason why we are here today,” said the resolution’s author, Senator Sharon Hewitt.
Mr. Lussan spent two years storming the beaches of Southern Italy from Salerno to Cassino and participated in Rome's liberation, where his unit fought grueling encounters against well-trained German soldiers, forcing them back to the Alps.
Hewitt-led resolution celebrates the heroic achievements of 100-year-old Louisiana native, Eugene Lussan.
While fighting for 58 days in the same clothing and living in trenches, he saw action from a Higgins boat, a tank, and on foot, and remembers mud, mountains, and mules.
Mr. Lussan witnessed many of his friends suffer the ultimate sacrifice and describes the constant fear he felt from endless artillery barrages. On the march northward, his unit faced danger daily, clearing mines using their bayonets as probes.
He encountered many brushes with death in hand-to-hand combat, for which he earned a Combat Infantryman Badge. For his participation in France's liberation, Mr. Lussan earned the most prestigious medal, the Croix de Guerre.
At the end of the war, and after 27 months of continual battle, he earned a space on the first available plane back to the United States, choosing to return home and carrying his last remaining bullet, which he still keeps with him today.
"We know that we live in the very best country in the world because of men like Mr. Gene that have fought for our freedoms," Senator Hewitt told the Senate.
Eugene Lussan is an exemplary member of an elite legion whose military service is a story of sacrifice, courage, and a tribute to all who served. His quiet demeanor and modest testament belies his uncommon achievements even among his peers.
in addition to his many achievements, Mr. Lussan has earned the respect and admiration of the countless citizens whose lives he has touched