Ranger Exes Memorial - RHS Class of 1943

Lowell Hunt LOWELL P. HUNT, 77, a lifetime newspaperman in the State of Texas, passed away on June 29, 2002 in Fort Worth. Mr. Hunt's career spanned some of the most important news stories of the 20th century as well as the evolution of the modern Texas newspaper. Burial was in Merriman Cemetery near Ranger, TX. Lowell Hunt was born in Ranger on Jan. 18, 1925, to I.D. Hunt, a farmer & oil field worker, and Laura Funderburk Hunt. He lost his little sister, Betty Jean, to a childhood illness when he himself was a child, but he rose from that tragedy and humble beginnings to a life of accomplishment. He left Ranger High School to serve three years in the U.S. Navy during WWII. As a petty officer, third class, with the Seabees, he won a Battle Star in the Iwo Jima campaign. Upon his discharge from the Navy at the end of the war, he joined the Brownwood Bulletin, one of five newspapers owned by the late C.C. Woodson of Brownwood. Woodson took the young Hunt under his wing and Hunt worked in the mechanical department of that paper as a floorman, Linotype operator and machinist. He also traveled throughout central Texas as one of the best Linotype repairman in the state. In the same year he began with the Bulletin, he married Mary Frances Cole of Dublin. In 1957, Hunt became publisher of the Lamesa Reporter and Brownfield Bulletin and at 34 was the youngest publisher in the chain of newspapers. In 1966, Hunt was named publisher of the Alice Echo- News. Hunt became heavily involved in all aspects of the community, serving as President of the Chamber of Commerce, Chairman of the Alice Urban Renewal Agency, Chairman of the Alice Industrial Foundation and Alice Industrial Development Team, Director of the United Way, and as a bank director for the Bank of South Texas and later First City Bank. He was awarded many honors over the years for his community involvement. Hunt was also founder and chairman of the Southwest Energy Exposition Inc., a successful annual exhibition and conference for the energy industry held each year in Alice, owned a stationary store and was active in real estate, hotels, ranching and politics in South Texas. In 1988, he was named publisher of the Stephenville Empire-Tribune, as well as the newspapers in Dublin and Hico, a position he held until the sale of the Woodson papers in 1988. After the sale of the papers, he raised Limousin cattle until his retirement in 1997. Hunt was known for his kind and compassionate nature, his honesty, and a genuine desire to help people. He went out of his way to be of service to others and to help improve the communities in which he lived and worked, both through the operation of his newspapers and through volunteer and community effort. Every newspaper he published was successful on all accounts. His wife Mary also served in many capacities at each paper, including managing the circulation department, classified advertising, and bookkeeping. Hunt was a loving son, brother, husband, father and lifelong, faithful friend to many, including the other publishers in the Woodson newspaper organization. He loved to joke, tell stories, fish, hunt, and bar-b-que. He especially loved social occasions, playing dominoes and being surrounded by his family and friends. His wife, Mary, preceded him in death in 1999, as well as his brother, June Hunt (RHS-1934) of Arlington, and sister, Betty Jean Hunt of Ranger. Survivors at the time of his death: daughters, Paula Rice of Fort Worth and husband, Bryan, Linda Smith of Hewitt and husband, Dewayne Lee; four grandchildren; sister-in-law, Inez Falls Hunt (RHS-1936) of Arlington, and a host of loving relatives and friends.