A hometown and national hero received special honors on October 5, 2002 when the city of Hampton dedicated the Ruppert Leon Sargent Memorial City Administration Building in downtown Hampton.
The 117,000-square-foot, seven-story building is named in honor of Hampton's only Medal of Honor recipient. Army 1st Lt. Ruppert Leon Sargent, a native of Phoebus, sacrificed his life in 1967 during the Vietnam War to save the life of fellow soldiers. In 1969, he was posthumously awarded the Medal of Honor, our nation's highest military decoration for valor.
A platoon leader with Company B, 4th Battalion, 9th Infantry, 25th Infantry Division "Tropic Lightning," Sargent was born, raised and educated in Hampton, and is buried in Hampton National Cemetery.
The high-rise city building houses the offices of the Hampton Schools Administration, the Commissioner of Revenue, City Treasurer, and other key departments.
Designed by CMSS Architects and constructed by Blueridge General Contractors, the Ruppert Leon Sargent Memorial Building features a Hampton Veterans Conference Room on the first floor for public use.
A fundraising drive, co-chaired by former Virginia Senate Majority Leader Hunter B. Andrews and Major General (retired) Wallace Arnold, U.S. Army, collected some $50,000 in donations for a bronze bust of Hampton's national hero, other adornments in the building honor Hampton's veterans.
The head-and-shoulders bust of Sargent is on permanent display in the building's lobby.