Jan. 29, 1934 —June 14, 2022
Bernard “Tubby” Hunt, 88, of Svensen, died June 14, 2022, in Astoria.
Hunt was born Jan. 29, 1934, in Astoria, to Lucy and William Hunt. He grew up on the waterfront of Svensen Island, where his family had a grocery store. As a young boy he fished, trapped and delivered groceries.
During his high school years at Knappa, he played baseball, basketball and football. Football was his favorite sport, and he was selected to play in the very first Shrine game in 1952, in Pendleton. He graduated in the Class of 1952. He attended Portland State University and played football.
He returned home and married his high school sweetheart, Helen “Susie” Shartel. For 14 years he worked on the river, rafting logs for Crown Zellerbach. During this same time period, he worked for his father at Hunt’s Market in the evenings.
In 1971, he purchased the market, which he continued to run until he retired, and sold it in 2011. Besides being a respected meat cutter, he ground thousands of pounds of wild game each year. You could ask anybody in Clatsop County where to get a good steak, and they would always say from Tubby.
In the early 1990s, he built a Texaco Mini-Mart at the Svensen junction. Many people in the community worked for him.
The grocery store was a family-run business. The grandchildren came daily to visit their grandpa in the meat department. He instilled a great work ethic in his children and grandchildren.
He grew up in the St. Mary, Star of the Sea Catholic Church, where he was an altar boy; this is when the Masses were said in Latin. He attended Star of the Sea School as a freshman.
He loved being on the river. In his early years, he enjoyed water skiing, camping and duck hunting. He also was a competitive log roller at the Astoria Regatta each year, and at other festivals.
He sponsored many Knappa youth programs, such as basketball, baseball, Knappa Summer Recreation and football. He was a local basketball referee for high school sports. He coached women’s slow-pitch softball and sponsored the team for Hunt’s Market.
In 1972, he built a Harley-Davidson chopper upstairs in his house. His friend, Jim Smith, was his partner in this venture. He and Susie enjoyed going for rides on his bikes in the country.
He was a loyal member of Ducks Unlimited. Each year he attended the banquet and brought his sons and grandsons to the dinner. He served on the board of the Burnside Water Association for over 20 years.
He lost the love of his life, and mother of his five children, in 1979 to cancer. She was 44 years old at the time.
Hunt is survived by three daughters, Kim Bunney, Mary Jo (Chuck) Smith and Julie (John) Nygaard; two sons, Tom (Lisa) Hunt and Brett (Tiffany) Hunt; 12 grandchildren, Chad and Darren Smith, Richard and Curtis Bunney, John Nygaard and Tracie Brockey, Madison and Reece Hunt and Holly, Hannah, Kyle and Chloe Hunt; 11 great-grandchildren; a sister, Anita Holdridge; and two brothers, Robert “Pudgy” Hunt and Danny Hunt.
Memorial contributions may be made to Knappa High School boys and girls athletics or the Knappa Food Pantry.
Visitation will be held from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Friday at Caldwell’s Luce-Layton Mortuary. There will be a private Holy Rosary recitation at 1 p.m.
An open graveside service will follow at 2 p.m. at Ocean View Cemetery in Warrenton. A celebration of life will be held at Knappa High School from 3:30 to 6 p.m.