Ezagui Inspires CHC Audience

Author, Soldier, and Speaker – Izzy Ezagui Shares Personal Story

Beginning the 2018-2019 CHC Distinguished Speaker Series, Israeli combat soldier Izzy Ezagui spoke to the Cape Henry Middle and Upper Schools on Thursday, September 6, 2018, about his various life experiences.  Originally from Miami, Florida, Ezagui is part of an orthodox Jewish family. When he was a teenager, Ezagui and his family traveled to Jerusalem, but while there, they witnessed a terrorist attack that changed Ezagui’s life forever.  After seeing his fellow people harmed, Ezagui was inspired to volunteer to enlist in the Israeli army when he turned eighteen years old. On the eve of his activation as a combat soldier, he was called to patrol the Egyptian-Israeli border from a distance.  Days later, Ezagui and his unit were sent in closer to settle the conflict when an explosive device hit Ezagui’s tent and more than half of his left arm was gone.

Ezagui still remembers every moment of the event and is able to describe the pain he felt while in-and-out of consciousness (and the three doses of morphine – a strong pain reliever – he received to ease his torment).  Ezagui lost his arm, but was not fatally injured and was able to start his recovery.  Through one and a half years of rehabilitation, easing off pain medication while suffering from phantom pain, and tremendous hard work, Ezagui was able to return to the army and has been serving in the reserves for five years.

Cape Henry students thoroughly enjoyed Ezagui’s presentation, Zach Earl (‘21) saying “he has been the best speaker so far!”  When asked about what was the most significant part of Ezagui and his words, Ava Mager (‘20) and Zach Earl said that the theme of resiliency “really stood out” to them and that CHC can learn from what he had to say.  Ava mentioned that it was quite admirable “how he was so sure of himself when he went back to the army and how he had so much confidence.”

In Zach and Ava’s opinions, Cape Henry brings in Distinguished Speakers to “teach us life lessons” and “see real-world examples of good character traits,” setting an example for CHC students to follow and giving them a role model to look up to.  Ava and Zach thoroughly enjoyed Ezagui’s presentation, but Ava thinks “it would be interesting to have a politician” visit and speak to the students after hearing from a lot of scientists and military personnel in the past. Zach is considering studying science or medicine in college, so he would like to listen to someone in that field, as he would find them “particularly interesting.”

To learn more about Izzy Ezagui, Izzy’s website is www.justizzy.com and his book Disarmed: Unconventional Lessons from the World’s Only One-Armed Special Forces Sharpshooter is available to check out from Cape Henry’s Perry Library or purchase from Amazon or Barnes and Noble.