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Dick Kohn posted a condolence
Monday, May 14, 2018Paula, My sincerest condolences on losing Michael--he was such a wonderful person and scholar, and so meaningful to so many of us. He certainly played an important role in my life and I appreciated his kindness, wisdom, and helpfulness. My heart goes out to you and your whole family. Sincerely, Dick
Kimberly Redding posted a condolence
Friday, April 27, 2018Dr. Hunt always had an encouraging word and a friendly smile--both of which I especially appreciated during the early semesters of graduate studies. Please know that your husband/father/brother/cousin touched many, many of us who weren't technically "his" students; I am so grateful for that, and sorry to hear of his death. respectfully yours, Kimberly (UNC PhD 2001)
Donald Mathews posted a condolence
Tuesday, April 24, 2018Michael Hunt was the best of colleagues. I enjoyed his company, his intellect, his inclusiveness, his insights; I enjoyed reading his books. I even assigned one in my class on Public Religion in America. I last saw him on March 14 in our orthodontist's office. We talked for about and hour--it seemed like 10 minutes. Too swiftly gone. But he made my day and I hurried home to read his comments on H R McMaster. He had been on McM's dissertation committee, and I had had McM in the Diss Seminar. As usual when having talked with Michael I was affected by his energy, his humor, his intellect and analysis. He was ten years younger than I and I told him I'd like to be around when he was 86 and we could talk. And then--death. His death is a personal loss to me; something rare and fine is gone from my life. From our lives.
James Crawford posted a condolence
Friday, April 20, 2018Paula, Maureen and I are saddened by this loss. Michael was and is a intellectual powerhouse. His works set the standard in the most difficult American History field to research and write, foreign relations. It was a singular privilege to have him shape my capacities as a scholar, a teacher, and a man. I carry his insistence that argument and evidence match into my work as a county commissioner. I am proud to have known him. He carried me miles down the road from where I started. Please take some comfort in knowing that we who were his students are pressing his imprint onto the larger world.
Jay Smith posted a condolence
Thursday, April 19, 2018What a terrible loss for the entire Chapel Hill community. Michael was a man of uncommon integrity, wisdom, and elegance. A serious and learned man, his wit and good sense could leaven any situation. At a History department advisory committee meeting in the mid-1990s, a conversation became heated as we talked about hiring priorities. Michael intervened: "Not to change the subject, but any birders in the room should have a look at that red-tailed hawk circling over Hamilton hall." He modeled a cool self-awareness that I greatly admired as a young assistant professor. My admiration for him only grew through the years. Sincere condolences to the family.
Wayne Lee posted a condolence
Thursday, April 19, 2018I barely overlapped with Michael at UNC. He had just retired when I arrived, but he and I served together on several dissertation committees and I have rarely seen such a master of the mentor's art, kind but insistent, supportive but incisive. A rare scholar and a gentleman.
Susie Matheson posted a condolence
Tuesday, April 17, 2018Michael was the most wonderful brother I could have wished for...smart, funny, caring and considerate. I will cherish our talks and time together. He will be greatly missed and never forgotten. I love you, Michael!
Bryan Davis lit a candle
Monday, April 16, 2018
Jianzhen Yu posted a condolence
Monday, April 16, 2018Dear Paula, It is a shock to hear the news for everyone in the Wang’s family. Just as recent as a few days ago, Jefferson was contemplating writing to Prof. Hunt for advice in deciding which university to attend. A few months ago, Prof. Hunt replied Jefferson’s email on his IB history writing and provided detailed revision comments and encouraging words. Three of us (Franklin, Jefferson, and Hamilton) are immensely proud of our names-names given by Prof. Hunt. We have heard so much about Prof. Hunt. We are coming to the US to start our college in a few months’ time. We had been excited with the prospect that we would go to Chapel Hill and visit Prof. Hunt. No words could describe our sadness that we’ll never have the opportunity to talk to Prof. Hunt in person. Prof. Hunt will always remain alive in our memories. Sincerely, Jian, Franklin, Jefferson, & Hamilton Wang
Xiaodong Wang posted a condolence
Sunday, April 15, 2018I heard the news a few hours ago and am in shock. Dear Professor Hunt, you might have been perfect, but why did you make the mistake of dying on me? You hear me? OK, you could die on me, for I have been your lousiest student. But what about Jian, the girl you and Paula married me, and who called you when the marriage was in trouble? You shouldn’t just leave us like this. Jian and I are grownups now, but what about Franklin, Jefferson, and Hamilton, the triplets you “presumptuously” named? They are raised with the expectation of coming to knock on the door with three bottles of sherry in their hands. They are 18 now and they are COMING, Professor Hunt! How could you have done this to them? I am in shock, and I am angry. Dear Professor Hunt, you never failed me, whether when I was in Chapel Hill, when I called you from Moscow and waking you up in the middle of the night, or after I have come to Hong Kong. I know I disappointed you, but I am working on it, OK? Didn’t you recently praise me for the business empire I am building? You trained me, you made me, you married me, you named my children, and finally, you failed me! You failed me big time, Professor Hunt, for what’s the meaning of all these endeavors of mine without you to show off to? You just shouldn’t die on me, on Jian, on the children, Professor Hunt. I don’t want you to go, Professor Hunt.
Robert L. Richardson, Jr. posted a condolence
Saturday, April 14, 2018Mrs. Hunt and the Hunt family: I would like to offer my heartfelt condolences to you on the loss of Michael. The history profession has also suffered a great loss. Few people have had the impact that he had on the field, and I know that the profession will be poorer for his absence. I also know with certainty, however, that his intellectual legacy will live on. On a personal note, I would like you to know that I regard myself as incredibly fortunate to have studied under him at UNC and will never forget his generosity with his time and advice. Our conversations ranged from discussions of lofty ideological concepts to the practicalities of job-hunting, writing and publishing to the difficulties and rewards of raising children and tomatoes. Michael was also extravagantly generous with his kindness and forbearance. I was a particularly inept graduate student, but he never gave up on me—for reasons that he never made quite clear. The closest he may have come was one time after I had committed some transgression against the History Department and he bailed me out. I thanked him, apologized and asked him why he put up with me. He said, “Us Texans have to stick together.” I replied, “But Dr. Hunt, I’m not from Texas.” “That’s OK,” he said with a wry grin, “you act like it sometimes.” So, from one (honorary) Texan to another, I wish Michael Happy Trails. Sincerely, Robert L. Richardson, Jr.
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