Hurst is a World War II veteran who served in North Africa. The feisty 92-year-old attended the annual Democratic Jefferson Jackson dinner Saturday night wearing her WWII uniform.
Ellsworth, who was the keynote speaker at the fundraiser, told Hurst, "Helen, at 92 years, you're my hero; you're my role model. You make me want to go back to Washington, DC and work that much harder."
The congressman ended the evening by asking the roomful of attendees to sing Happy Birthday to Hurst, who would celebrate her 93rd birthday on Sunday.
"Working for your fellow man is what it is all about," said Ellsworth of serving in congress. "As much as what we hear is wrong with this country, look at how much is right."
Ellsworth spoke about the recent earthquake in Haiti and the devastation saying that in the United States it would have been a much less tragic event.
"Building codes would have prevented some of it; rescuers would have been on the scene sooner and hundreds of volunteers would have been there sooner," he said.
He claims not to have been interested in politics, but wanting to serve people.
"If people can say he's worked hard, is honest, fair and studied hard and did the best he could then I've done my job," he said.
Ellsworth told the group that democrats and republicans have to work together.
"Last year we were on the brink of a great depression. It takes drastic means to come out of it. I didn't like voting for $700 billion stimulus package, but I called the people back home and asked them about it," he said.
As a member of the fiscally conservative Blue Dog Coalition, Ellsworth says he wants to make "the golden years really golden."
"We're working to get there and it'll be okay," he stated.
In 1998, Ellsworth was elected Vanderburgh County Sheriff, where he completed two terms. He also served as President of the Indiana Sheriff's Association.
Born in Huntingburg, Ellsworth lived nearly all of his life in Evansville, where his father worked in the Warrick County Alcoa plant. He attended University of Southern Indiana where he received a bachelor's degree in sociology, and Indiana State University where he received a master's degree in criminology.
Ellsworth and his wife Beth reside in Evansville. They have a daughter, Andrea.
Also speaking briefly during the evening were Greencastle resident and State Representative Nancy Michael, Vop Osili running for Indiana Secretary of State and Pete Buttigieg vying for the State Treasurer spot.