Southern Utah News Articles
Combat Veteran Spotlight - Brent Owens
Brent Owens – wild bull rider, missionary and Marine. Brent was born on April 2, 1946, in Panguitch, Utah. From his early years, he loved excitement and rodeos, and bull riding was his favorite. He stopped long enough to serve an LDS mission in the northwest states of Oregon, Idaho and Washington. After his two-year mission, he attended two quarter terms of college.
At this point, Owens decided to join the Marines. Why the Marines? He says because Marines were in his family and he didn’t dare do otherwise. He signed up for a two-year stint with a 120-day delay, and went to boot camp with a Utah platoon… all Utah boys. He had combat training on Coronado Island.
His service in Vietnam included being a door gunner on one of the newest, most elite choppers of that time. His job was recovery of the Marines who were wounded or killed. A job that was heroic, dangerous, sad and rewarding. The worst part was retrieving the dead and taking them back to base. Many were taken to hospitals, where hopefully, they recovered.
Owens mentioned the disciplinary actions taken when Marines didn’t follow orders was cleaning latrines and burning human waste. That was certainly an incentive to toe the mark.
When asked if he was changed by his service in the Marines, Owens replied yes, it certainly gave him a respect for life and a new tenderness toward those around him.
Owens, like all our Veterans who heroically served, is a hero and a very interesting fellow with adventures to share.
Thank you Brent Owens for your service! May God bless our soldiers who serve, and have served, their country.