James H. "Jim" Hunter, Sr., 85, passed away on March 11, 2014, surrounded by family and friends in Brownsville, Texas.|
Jim, a descendant of a Brownsville pioneer family, was born Jan. 7, 1929, on the family farm in El Jardin.
He obtained a bachelor's degree in business management from the University of Texas in 1951. Upon graduation, and during the Korean conflict, he enlisted in the United States Coast Guard, serving on the Cutters Wachusett and Balsam in the Berring Sea. After his honorable discharge in 1954, Jim returned to Brownsville to work in the family business with his father, Earl Hunter, his uncle John Hunter, his brother Bob Hunter, his brother in law, A.L. Newman, and his son Tommy Hunter, who joined the business later. The business thrived for decades.
Jim was an honest, ethical businessman who never took shortcuts. He believed that education and a strong work ethic were the keys to success. But Jim will be remembered most for his other qualities and achievements.
Shortly after returning to Brownsville in 1955, Jim married the love of his life, Marilyn Houghtaling, a young school teacher. Together they raised three kids - Tommy, Terri and Jim Jr. He showed his kids and others what it meant to be a loving husband, especially during later years while he cared for Marilyn during her extended battle with Parkinson's disease, and eventual passing in 2008.
Jim was a true sportsman with a passion for the outdoors. Like his father, brother, and sister, Jim raised his family around a love and respect for the outdoors and wildlife. He loved deer hunting and he loved training pointer dogs to hunt quail. And he loved fishing for reds and trout on his boat. He taught Marilyn and the kids to fish and hunt in a respectful way. Most family outings and virtually all holidays were spent at the hunting lease in the winter and the Arroyo Colorado in the summer.
Jim was a generous and kind soul who had many lifelong friends. He was a man of few words with a sharp wit. Much of his communication and leadership were through his example. He was just an incredible man who showed, through his actions, what it meant to be a real husband, father and friend.
Jim was preceded in death by his wife Marilyn, his parents, Earl C. Hunter and Jessie Baugh Hunter, his brother, Robert L. Hunter, his sister, Jean Hunter Newman and his brothers in law, A.L. Newman and Jim Houghtaling.
He is survived by his daughter Terri Burroughs (Jeff) of Austin, sons Tommy Hunter and Jim Hunter, Jr. (Myrna), and his beautiful granddaughters Andrea, Alexandra and Steffani Hunter of Brownsville, his sisters in law, Margie Hunter and Betty Coulter, and his dear and loving companions of many years, Esperanza Solis and Rafaela Gonzalez.
Jim was a faithful member of Central Christian Church.
A memorial service will be held at 2 p.m. at Central Christian Church with Pastor Lance Hostetter officiating on Friday, March 14, 2014, 1100 East Alton Gloor Blvd, Brownsville, Texas, 78526.
In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made to Central Christian Building Fund or the NRA Foundation, 11250 Waples Mill Road, Fairfax, VA 22030.
Jim's remains will be interred at a private family burial service at a later date.
Funeral arrangements are under the direction of Delta Funeral Directors, family owned and operated, (956) 542-2222.P
Published in Brownsville Herald on Mar. 13, 2014