Deacon William Hunt; ministered in Rochester, North Carolina, Virginia

Mike Latona/Catholic Courier    |    09.30.2019
Category: Obituaries


Deacon William Hunt, who was ordained a permanent deacon in the Diocese of Rochester in 1988 before performing most of his diaconal ministry in North Carolina and Virginia, died Sept. 21, 2019, in Hagerstown, Md. He was 91 years old.

A native of England, Deacon Hunt was ordained out of St. Joseph Parish in Penfield, and served at that parish as well as Rochester’s St. Anthony of Padua Parish and Rochester Psychiatric Center.

He was a design engineer with Xerox Corp. for 25 years. In 1994, Deacon Hunt relocated to Raleigh, N.C., eventually becoming incardinated into that diocese. He later served in the Diocese of Richmond until 2014. Most recently, he resided in Hagerstown.

Two of Deacon Hunt’s 1988 classmates, Deacon Angelo Coccia of Gates and Deacon John Tomandl of Auburn, said they hadn’t kept in close touch with Deacon Hunt since he relocated out of state, but remember him fondly from his time in formation and ministry in the Rochester Diocese.

“I always called him ‘The Englishman.’ He spoke with a heavy accent,” Deacon Coccia recalled. “He was well-versed on things. He never showed it off, but you could tell by his mannerisms. He was just a humble guy. I had great classmates, and he was one of them.”

“He was always very sensitive to the needs of people around him, constantly ready to offer any kind of assistance or help he could,” Deacon Tomandl added.

Deacon Hunt is survived by his wife, Donna; daughters, Claire Hunt-Heineman (Eric) and Karen Hunt; son, Grant (Patricia) Hunt; stepsons, Stephen DiStefano and Vincent (Helen) DiStefano; stepdaughters, Debra Murphy and Dawn (Erich) Menge; brother, Maurice (Gillian) Hunt; five grandchildren; one niece; and two nephews.

His funeral Mass was celebrated Sept. 30, 2019, at St. Ann Church in Hagerstown. A memorial Mass will take place Oct. 19, 2019, at 11 a.m. at St. Joseph Church, 43 Gebhardt Road, Penfield. Interment will be at St. Joseph Cemetery in Penfield.

Memorial donations may be made to the New Bern Soup Kitchen, payable to Religious Community Services, 919 George St., New Bern, NC 28560.

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