Helping others is the primary duty of Arkadelphia native Sammy Hart.

BLACK HISTORY MONTH PROFILE
 
Helping others is the primary duty of Arkadelphia native Sammy Hart.
“My number one thing is I’ve always had a desire to help people. That’s always been important,” said Hart.
According to Hart, Laverne and William Feaster played an influential role in his life.
“I had my biological mother and father, Bessie and Jewell Hart, but the Feasters came in and played a big part in my life,” Hart said.
After graduating from Arkadelphia High School, Hart attended Henderson State University for approximately two years. He entered the National Guard at the age of 17 and has served for 31 years without a break.
“I got in law enforcement in 1993 and I have never had a break in service there. I’m a workaholic,” said Hart.
Hart’s interest in the military stemmed from his brother Greg’s enlistment in the U.S. Marine Corps. After watching his brother excel in the ranks, Hart decided to give the military a try.
“I wanted to try school. I tried it, and at the time it wasn’t for me. I wanted to jump into what was the next best thing, and the Army was the next best thing for me,” Hart said.
Hart is an E7 Sergeant First Class in the Army. As a consequence of the military’s impact on his life, Hart said it sparked an interest in law enforcement.
“After being in the uniform with the military I wondered what else could I do that was closer to home,” Hart explained.
Hart decided to pursue a career in law enforcement. This decision led to Hart becoming the first African-American Deputy Sheriff for the Hot Spring County Sheriff’s Department from 1993 to 1995.
Hart left Hot Spring County at the end of 1995 to take a job at the Henderson State University Police Department. After serving at Henderson for four years, Hart went to work for the Highway Police.
“They were going to move me over to West Memphis. I decided I didn’t want to move to West Memphis, so I went back to Henderson State in 2000,” Hart explained.
In 2005, Hart was asked by several friends to consider joining the Arkansas State Police as a state trooper.
“I was always interested in being a state trooper, but it was the academics and physical part that scared me,” said Hart.
Hart passed the necessary components needed to become a state trooper. He also completed the certified officers course, which is a 10-week course, and graduated in 2005.
“It was tough. I’ve also been through basic training and it was tough. Between the two, they were neck and neck,” Hart said.
Hart is a corporal with the Arkansas State Police. In addition, Hart is member of the Arkansas State Veterans Commission. Although he has never been deployed, Hart has been in the military through most of the recent wars and has taught multiple courses to officers at bases throughout the country.
Because of his job with the Arkansas State Police, Hart said he has an opportunity to render personal assistance to people in need.
“You’re actually right there helping folks everyday on the highway. Either you are changing a flat, or you are pulling a baby out of a car or you are keeping someone safe by writing a ticket for driving too fast,” said Hart.
From the military perspective, Hart said it is a commitment to make sure that the state and the country are both safe.
“Even though my part is small, I am playing a part, along with all of my brothers and sisters, in making sure that we keep this country safe and make this world and nation a better place to live,” Hart said.
According to Hart, Black History Month is a time to reflect on the sacrifices that his ancestors have endured and accomplished to pave the way for him and future generations.
Although great strides have been made, Hart believes it is important to keep working in pursuit of more.
“We have to keep on keep on. We have to keep on pushing to be the best we can be because it is only up to you, as a black person, as to what you want to do with your life,” said Hart.
Hart noted educators, administrators and other law enforcement officers as people he has grown to admire and respect. He also admires the efforts of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and former President Barack Obama.
Hart hopes to be a positive role model and an example for young men.
“I want to make sure that young men understand there is nothing in this world that limits you, but yourself. Just believe in yourself even when others don’t. Believe in yourself and you will be OK,” said Hart.
When he is not busy, Hart enjoys riding motorcycles and spending time with his family. He also owns a small tour bus company.