Cadet News

Honoring SFC(R) Richard Hurt – Army JROTC Instructor and LifeChanger of the Year Award Recipient

SFC(R) Richard Hurt Wins National LifeChanger of the Year Award
  • Posted on Jul 30th, 2019
  • 4th Brigade

LEWES, DE -- SFC(R) Richard Hurt has had a profound impact on his community, Cape Henlopen High School, and his Army JROTC Cadets. In 2017, he was honored with the LifeChanger of the Year Award for his accomplishments and contributions to his community. SFC Hurt was selected out of over 700 educators who were nominated for the award nationwide. To expand on SFC Hurt's high standard of excellence, we want to share some testimonials from individuals he’s impacted: a student, a parent, and the Mayor of Lewes, Deleware.


“Wow, where do I even begin. I guess I will start when I first stepped into high school as a 9th grader. Sgt. Hurt definitely had his hands full with my class. I can guarantee you any other teacher would have tried to kick us out or send us away. Not Sgt. Hurt though. Yeah we did a lot of pushups but we were studs at the end. Sgt. Hurt has way of taking a lost confused mind and turning it into a confident motivated one such as he did with me. I actually don’t know where I would be if I have never met Sgt. Hurt. He has made more a more responsible, independent, motivated and simply a better citizen to society. I still look back on some of the long talks I would have with him early before class or later after class or even during some classes he was always there for me and everyone else. Someone he made that possible to never turn down a student. And the care and support he gave to all of us. You don’t find that in a teacher very often. Even though I decided not to go into the service that’s not what Sgt. Hurt’s goal was for his students. He simply just wanted to give back like if he didn’t give enough for his country already but to give kids a chance at their dreams and help them be successful in life. I know that I would never be able to repay you for what you have done for me but thank you Sgt. Hurt for being a role model every student should have. And if you ever needed anything I’m one call away!” ~ Bobby Zakrzekski (Student)


“I have known SFC Richard Hurt since 2009 when my son started as a freshman at Cape Henlopen High School and began his JROTC program. Sergeant Hurt was from that day on a big part in defining my son’s future. In the years I have known Sergeant Hurt he has guided, mentored, instructed, and LISTENED to all who came into his path. He is not just a great educator, he is a GREAT ADVOCATE! Sergeant Hurt goes over and beyond his role as just a teacher. He puts his heart and soul when it comes (to) the students. So as a parent, it was peace of mind that you knew Sergeant Hurt was on duty when you could not be there. He watched over all the students that came into his path. Sergeant Hurt just didn’t teach the ARMY way, he taught all the way. He made sure that the students had anything they needed to make it through their day. Whether it was lunch or a new pair of sneakers. Students didn’t hang out around the lockers or hallways, they were in Sergeant Hurt’s room communicating. Communicating what went on that day and seeking out the guidance that Sergeant Hurt would give to them. I looking back, as a parent I am so grateful that Sergeant Hurt’s path crossed over with my son’s. I am so proud of the man my son is becoming and I know Sergeant Hurt played a big part in mentoring my son in the direction he is going. Sergeant Hurt is very passionate and committed to his students! So I am nominating Sergeant Richard Hurt for the Life Changer of the Year award because of the impact he has on our youth which will have an impact on our future.” ~ Diane Couchman (Parent)


“I met SFC Richard Hurt through his work Cape Henlopen High School’s JROTC program. As the Mayor of Lewes Delaware, I have been able to witness his strong leadership skills with his students. He is an outstanding role model for them and is always willing to bring forth new ways and ideas in which they can be of assistance to many community activities. It is clear that the students place a great deal of value and respect in his leadership role. SFC Hurt is dedicated to the program and his students: as a result his students are inspired to exceed expectations. It is also apparent that he is highly respected by the administration and faculty members of the school and district. As a result of his dedication he has been able to change the lives of many students and help them find a direction that will help shape their lives.” ~ Ted Becker (Mayor of Lewes, Delaware)

To learn more about SFC Hurt's award and to read more testimonials visit The LifeChanger of the Year Award Website.