Michael Taylor (Mike) Hunter, 63, flew away to sing in heaven’s barbershop chorus on Wednesday, October 7, 2009 at his home in College Station, Texas after a valiant battle against pancreatic cancer. He was born on December 12, 1945 in Tulsa, Oklahoma to Wendell H. Hunter, Sr. and Virginia Maxine (Malom) Hunter. He spent his early years in Tulsa, Oklahoma and Wichita, Kansas and then relocated to Rockford, Illinois and spent the rest of his growing-up years in Rockford. He was a proud 1963 graduate of Rockford Auburn High School and joined his class last November in celebrating 45 years since graduation. He joined the U.S. Air Force in 1965 and served in Vietnam 1972-1973. He retired in June 1988 from active service while at Goodfellow AFB, Texas. He went on to spend nearly 20 years in Civil Service at Goodfellow AFB and retired December 31, 2007 as an Instructional Systems Designer. He graduated from Angelo State University, San Angelo Texas in 2001 with a degree in Computer Science. He and his wife moved to College Station, Texas in June of 2008 to be near his family and went to work for his son’s company, Web Unlimited, as a computer programmer, also allowing adequate time for enjoying golf with his son! He was a member of Peace Lutheran Church in College Station.
Mike married Christine (Peterson) Hunter on December 24, 1965, a classmate and Auburn H.S. 1963 graduate. While serving his country in the U.S. Air Force, they were blessed with two children: Debbie was born in 1966 and Christopher was born in 1973. They traveled as an Air Force family to Hanna City AFS, Illinois; Finland AFS, Minnesota; MacDill AFB, Florida; George AFB, California; Goodfellow AFB, Texas; Misawa AB, Japan; and back to Goodfellow AFB, Texas.
During his 30 years in San Angelo, Texas, Mike was a member of Christ Lutheran Church, serving as a council member as well as Education Director and Council Vice-President. He was an active member of the Twin Mountain Tonesmen barbershop chorus of San Angelo since 1985 and sang with several quartets while with the chapter. He loved doing the Singing Valentines with the chorus every Valentine’s Day as well as the yearly shows. Barbershopping was an integral part of his life and gave him great joy.
Mike is survived by his wife of 43 years, Christine; his daughter Debbie Doran and husband Lee of Flower Mound, Texas, and son Christopher Hunter and wife Tara of College Station, Texas. He loved and was so proud of his grandchildren: Gregory Doran of Lubbock, Texas; Rebekah Doran of Flower Mound, Texas; and Kenneth and Matthew Hunter of College Station, Texas. His grandchildren proudly knew him as “Popeye”. He is also survived by his sisters Sandra (David) Johns of Rockford, Illinois and Pamela (Chuck) Burns of Florence, Arizona as well as his stepbrother Mark Hunter, half-brothers Wendell Hunter, Jr. and Matthew Hunter and half-sister Karen McGuffie of Torrington, Connecticut.
Mike was pre-deceased by his mother, Maxine Trapani; his stepfather, Nick Trapani; his father, Wendell Hunter, Sr. and his in-laws Kenneth and Edna (Hess) Peterson.
A Memorial Service will be held at Peace Lutheran Church in College Station on Saturday, October 10, 2009 at 10:00 a.m. with Rev. Steve Rieke officiating. There will also be a Memorial Service at Christ Lutheran Church in San Angelo on Monday, October 12, 2009 at 10:30 a.m. with Rev. Celia Ellery officiating. A Memorial Service will be held in Rockford, Illinois at Fitzgerald Funeral Home (Riverside) followed by graveside burial services at Sunset Memorial Gardens on October 24, 2009.
The family extends special thanks to all the members of Peace Lutheran Church who so lovingly helped care for Mike and the family these past months especially Pastor Steve Rieke; Hospice Brazos Valley, especially Craig, Melissa and Sandra; Dr. David Fogelman of M.D. Anderson Cancer Center in Houston; and Dr. Usha Venkatraj, Sarah and Iris of Hope Cancer Center.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests memorials to Hospice Brazos Valley, 502 S. 26th, Bryan, TX 77803 or M.D. Anderson Cancer Center/Mail-In Donation, PO Box 4486, Houston, TX 77210.
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