Forsyth County

France Honors Local World War II Vet

A World War II veteran from Forsyth County has received the highest honor the nation of France can give. David Nelson isn’t the type to toot his own horn, so the entire nation of France did it for him.

"More than 70 years ago, Mr. Nelson risked his life for the freedom of France and Europe,” Consulate General Vincent Hommeril said.

Hommeril came to Cumming to award the 95-year old the Legion of Honor, created by Napoleon.

"It is always wonderful to be remembered for a service you performed,” Nelson said.

And what a service. David was 19 when he stormed the beaches of Normandy. He fought his way across France with the U.S. Third Army, and distinguished himself in battle over and over.

"I was very proud of him, and I'm proud of France,” wife Lillouise Nelson said. His bride has been by his side for 72 years. This was a moment she says they’ll always remember. A celebration for a hero. Part of America’s Greatest Generation. David says he’d serve again. He is proud to be an American. "This is one wonderful country,” Nelson said.

David is in good company. Generals Eisenhower, MacArthur, and George Patton also received the Legion of Honor from France.

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