Mr. Hunter was born in Grove City, Pa., on June 6, 1917, to the late Samuel Robb and Mary Denniston Hunter. He married Evelyn McMichael June 12, 1943. They celebrated their 70th anniversary in 2013. During his life, he was a self-employed farmer and a metalsmith at the Arthur Armour Forge in Grove City.
He served his country during World War II as a U.S. Army Medic.
He was a member of Tower Presbyterian Church in Grove City and in recent years had been affiliated with the Irwin Presbyterian Church. He taught Sunday school for decades, and was often the chosen “preacher” for informal Sunday services at many livestock shows.
Active in agriculture throughout his life, Mr. Hunter attended Penn State University. He was an active member of numerous sheep and wool organizations, and was the secretary of the Pa. Suffolk Sheep Association for more than four decades.
His unique Suffolk newsletters were popular, not just in Pennsylvania, but across the nation. He was well-known for his signature style of blending current livestock news with a history lesson and a little dose of humor.
He also served as secretary for the Pa. Shorthorn Cattle Association for many years, and was a past president of the Mercer County Board of Extension.
Mr. Hunter was well known in Pennsylvania and nationally for exhibiting prize-winning sheep and cattle at many county fairs, the International Keystone Livestock Exposition and Pa. Farm Show, and the Chicago International Livestock Exposition for more than 50 years.
He also was a frequent judge of sheep and cattle in the eastern United States, and also managed sheep sales in Pennsylvania. He received numerous awards for his contributions to the livestock industry, and his family was honored as the 1983 Pa. Farm Family of the Year.
In 1994, Mr. Hunter was inducted into the Pennsylvania Livestock Hall of Fame at the Keystone International Livestock Exposition. Also in 1994, the Keystone Sheep Sale was dedicated to him in honor of his many years of contributions to the sheep industry.
Nationally, he was recognized in 1997 at Louisville with the presentation of the Distinguished Service Award from the National Suffolk Sheep Association. His service to the Suffolk industry began in 1939 with the purchase of his first Suffolk.
Survivors include his wife, Evelyn, at home; nine children, Samuel, of Hagerstown, Md.; Mary Musser, New Middletown, Ohio; Audrey Wheeler, of Mercer, Pa.; Donald, and W. Glenn, both Grove City, Pa.; Liz Kingsley, of Volant, Pa.; Robert, of Pickerington, Ohio; Hazel, of Stoneboro, Pa.; and Frank Hunter, of Jamestown, N.Y.; as well as 15 grandchildren and 20 great-grandchildren.
Memorials in Mr. Hunters’s memory may be sent to the Leslie Firth Scholarship Fund, Mercer County Extension, P.O. Box 530 Mercer, PA 16137.
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