Captain Robert Eldon Hart

September 5, 1919October 28, 2013
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Captain Robert Eldon Hart (retired Navy) age 94 of Carolina Preserve, Cary NC, died October 28, 2013. The Captain was born in Minerva, Ohio and completed 20 years of active duty with the US Navy after Midshipman School graduation in 1942. He held the rank of Ensign through Captain until retiring in June, 1961.

Bob Hart was first and foremost a sailor – an America sailor - and all that he accomplished in his later years is merely an extension of his interest in and dedication to his first love, the United States Navy. His war and sea duty included service aboard flagships, battleships, carriers, and icebreakers. He was a senior military officer during World War II and the Korean War.

He was an important fixture in the lives of America’s seafarers and the merchant marine for generations, whether in the Navy or in his work in the private sector.

Upon retiring from the Navy in 1961, Captain Hart moved easily into one of our country’s foremost American-Flag carriers, the American Export Lines, as executive assistant to the company’s chairman, the late Navy Admiral John Will. Later in his career, Bob Hart joined the Marine Index Bureau holding the position of President and Chief Operating Officer until 1993 when he left NY to teach International Marketing at Mount Union College in Alliance Ohio, close to his home town. Well know and appreciated in American Maritime circles, Captain Hart was the recipient of a multitude of honors and awards: Maritime Industry Person of the Year; Master Mariner Degree recipient; Ships Wheel Award for reaching youth of America at the Merchant Marine Academies; Admiral of the Ocean Sea Award by the United Seaman’s Service which included a statue of Christopher Columbus who was named the first ever Admiral by Queen Isabella. Bob was honored for his tireless efforts to improve the lot of merchant seafarers, at sea and ashore – a strong supporter of the American Flag operations wherever he served.

Captain Hart is survived by Jane Mae his wife of 65 years, daughters Suzanne (William) Luksis and Sandra Mae (Eric) Hackert, 5 grandchildren, 5 great grandchildren, and his brother Paul Hart. A military tribute is being planned at the Carolina Preserve.

A memorial service will be held 4-6 pm Friday, November 1, 2013 at Bradford Hall at The Carolina Preserve, 115 Allforth Place, Cary, NC 27519.

Condolences may be sent to


  • Memorial Service Friday, November 1, 2013

Captain Robert Eldon Hart

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December 25, 2013

Jane and Family, Please accept my condolences on the passing of Captain Hart. A classy, intelligent man who accomplished so much. He will be missed.

Sincerely, Ezra Schneier

Betty & Buddy Simpkins

November 17, 2013

Jane & Family. We just heard about Captain Hart's passing. He was such a special person and we thought so much of him. Our thoughts and prayers are with you.

November 2, 2013

May the family be comforted by the memories they shared and keep them close to their heart. John 17:3

October 31, 2013

Rest in Peace

October 31, 2013

We all at Leesville Internal Medicine send our condolences, it was an honor to have been able to treat and to have known Captain he will be truely missed.

Love the crew at Dr. Barakat's office,
Dr. Barakat, Michelle, Alena, Fatima and Joselle

Jan Kook

October 31, 2013

Melissa: Your grandfather sounds as though he was a remarkable man in many ways. Our country is honored to have had him serve so well and for so long. My thoughts and prayers are with you and your family.

Gail Baker

October 31, 2013

What beautiful photos and a great story. My thoughts and prayers are with you all.