Mr. Francis Merle Hunt, age 89, passed away on Tuesday, Aug. 20, 2013, in Nacogdoches. He was born on April 19, 1924, to parents Lewis Elbert Hunt and Nelle Vore Pittman Hunt in Havana, Kan. Merle is preceded in death by his parents; loving wife of 62 years, Merle Audrey Morrison Hunt; brother, Vore Hunt; and sisters, Marguerite McIlwain and Alice Melander. He is survived by his son, Gregory Vore Hunt and wife, Brandi Wynne, of Phoenix, Ariz.; daughters, Jan H. Griffin and husband, Jimmy, and Marsha Crain, all of Nacogdoches; grandsons, Steven Crain and wife, Tamara, of Arlington, Brian Mixon of Palestine, and John Vore Hunt of Park City, Utah; granddaughters, Diane Fullinwider and husband, Randy, of Katy, Melissa Mixon Lewis of San Antonio, and Audrey Leanne Hunt Warner and husband, Matt, of Greeley, Colo.; six great-grandchildren; sister, Elizabeth Devlin; and numerous nieces and nephews. After completing high school, Francis married Merle and went into the service. He earned technical sergeant during World War II for the United States Army. He traveled to Leyte and Luzon in the Phillipines and Japan. He earned a Purple Heart while in the service. Upon his return, he used his GI Bill to attend college and graduated with his bachelorâ€™s degree in agriculture from Kansas State University. He became the youngest superintendent in Carnation Ice Cream and Milk Company in Wichita Falls. He also worked for large companies such as Braums and Cabells Dairy. Merle was a devoted member of the Methodist church and learned a deep respect for God that he demonstrated in raising his family. He was a quiet man who had excellent moral convictions. He took great pride in caring for his wife for eight years while she suffered from Alzheimers until her passing. He was a blessing to his family and those who were around him. At 3 p.m. on Friday, Sept. 6, 2013, a celebration of life will take place at Cason Monk-Metcalf Sunset Chapel with a eulogy offered by Jimmy Griffin and assisted by Butch Haltom. Private inurnment will take place at a later date at Havana Cemetery in Havana, Kan. The family would like to express â€œspecial appreciationâ€ to Rock Haven Nursing Home, Dr. LaBarbera and staff, Nacogdoches Treatment Center and Encompass Home Health for the love and compassion they expressed to Merle and his family during these difficult days. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be offered to Nacogdoches Treatment Center, Alzheimer Program, 119 Hughes St. Nacogdoches 75961; or The Salvation Army, 118 E. Hospital St., Nacogdoches 76965. Online condolences may be offered at www.casonmonk-metcalf.com. Funeral arrangements are under the direction and care of Cason Monk-Metcalf Funeral Directors.
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Published in The Daily Sentinel on Sept. 6, 2013