- The Enterprise
- The Recorder
Retired Cmdr. Robert M. Hurt, 92, of Los Alamos, N.M., formerly of Lexington Park, died March 8, 2013, in Los
Born Feb. 1, 1921, in Dallas, he was the son of Robert L. Hurt and Margaret Turney Hurt.
He is survived by his daughters, Margaret Hurt Guthrie (Arthur) of Los Alamos and Norma Jane Hurt of Clemson, S.C.; stepson, Thomas Billingsley of Lexington Park; three grandchildren and their spouses; one step-granddaughter and her spouse and five great-grandchildren. Cdr. He was preceded in death by his parents and sister; his first wife, Norma Teal Hurt; and his second wife, Nan Billingsley Hurt.
His career as an aviator spanned 44 years, during which he logged 28,236 hours of flight time.
His 24 years as a Navy pilot began in 1942 when, as a V5 cadet, he started his military training. He received his designation as a naval aviator in January 1944. He retired from the Navy on June 30, 1966. The August 1966 issue of Naval Aviation News gave a detailed account of his Navy career, the last 11 years of which he was known as the CNO’s pilot. Beginning in 1955, he was assigned to be the aircraft commander for three chiefs of naval operations: Adm. Arleigh Burke (1955 to 1961), Adm. George Anderson (1962 and 1963) and Adm. David M. McDonald (1963 to 1966). During his career in the Navy, Bob Hurt was involved in many noteworthy events. Two examples are, while at Patuxent River Naval Air Station squadron VR-1, flying the Atlantic leg of the Berlin Airlift, Operation Vittles in 1945; and while stationed at Westover Air Force Base in Massachuesetts (1949-1953), his participation in Operation Bluejay, supplying materials and equipment to developing defense bases in Greenland (esp. Thule), as a result of which he and his fellow VR-6 pilots pioneered polar navigation techniques and cold-weather flying doctrine.
He continued to fly for an additional 20 years as captain for the Emerald Shillelagh Chowder & Marching Society, a private air travel club based at Dulles International Airport. He retired in 1986. He wrote a memoir, “Flying Above All Else,” that was published privately.
The family received friends March 14 at Brinsfield Funeral Home in Leonardtown. A funeral service was held at St. Andrew’s Episcopal Church in California. Interment followed at the church cemetery.
Memorial contributions may be made to any animal rescue group, such as the St. Mary’s County Animal Welfare League, P.O. Box 1232, Leonardtown, MD 20650.