Local coaches, players, reporters, social media pay tribute to Steve Hunt – Pasadena Star News


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The journalism community and readers of the San Gabriel Valley Tribune, Pasadena Star News and our sisters papers in the Southern California Newspaper Group lost one of its best with the passing of Steve Hunt on Tuesday. He was 64.

Hunt worked 45 years in the newspaper business and did it all. He was the President and Publisher of the Daily Press in Victorville when he passed, but local readers remember him for his many years of contributions, especially in high school sports.

Hunt penned his goodbye column in 2014 after 40 years with our newspaper group, most of it spent with the San Gabriel Valley Tribune. Hunt became the prep editor at the Tribune in 1988 after 14 years with the Star-News and immediately his legend started grow with his unmatched work ethic and relationships with players and coaches.

When the local community learned of Hunt’s passing, the outpouring of support and tribute’s on social media, from former colleagues, coaches and players all helped explain a life that meant so much to so many.

Here are a few of the tributes as well as local coaches and players reaction from his days with the San Gabriel Valley Tribune, where he spent 25 years sharing your stories and inspiring those who knew him.

San Gabriel Valley Tribune sports page designer Larry Morgan, left, and editor Steve Hunt look at photos for an upcoming edition of the paper on June 6, 1997. (Photo by Leo Jarzomb/San Gabriel Valley Tribune)

Damien basketball coach Mike Leduc, whom Hunt covered during the glory days of LeDuc and Glendora basketball in the late 80s and early 90s.

“I know he really cared a lot about high school athletics. He was about being positive, being fair and he worked really hard,” LeDuc said. “He was always receptive to a phone call. Back then you had to call Steve or you would see him in person, that’s how it worked.

“There was no social media, and what I remember about Steve is beyond all the talk about basketball or what have you, he generally cared about people. He cared about the kids he wrote about. That’s that first thing that comes to my mind thinking about Steve.

“I remember him as a young reporter and he had a lot of energy, he worked as hard as you could and he was just positive. I get frustrated with all the negative news today and the thing about Steve is he didn’t take the low road. He was always about being positive.” 

Fred Claire, former Dodgers General Manager

 “Steve was a true professional and always a pleasure to work with during my time with the Dodgers,” Claire wrote. Steve treated the smallest high school and the largest pro teams with the same dedication and respect.”

Don Lugo football coach Greg Gano, who remembers Hunt when he started his career in the San Gabriel Valley with Northview and Los Altos.

“What I loved most about the Steve Hunt days at the Tribune is they would call you, invite you down for all-area pictures and Steve and everyone always made you feel so welcome, Gano recalled. “It was so personal and just a great relationship between the newspaper, your reporters and it was a great time and nobody did it quite like Steve.

“Yes, he was a great writer and he did so much for so many, but you just talk to Steve a couple times and you know what a great person he was, and how fair he was. He was deeper than a sports page and he made those years of high school sports some of the most memorable ever.”

Glendora basketball legend Tracy Murray, who later when on to play at UCLA and in the NBA and also with the Lakers.

“I met Steve when he was with the Star-news when he was covering Muir, Stacy Augmon and those guys, and we just started a relationship,” Murray said. “It built from there. It became a friendship. He was somebody you could trust that would tell the story and how you said it.”

Murray talked about the relationship between reporters and athletes back then.

“There was so much trust between both. It use to be the reporters and beat guys would get to know each other on a personal level, could go out and have drinks and you would hang out socially and you didn’t have to worry about anything coming out. Those were the good old days when reporters and athletes trusted each other. 

“Steve was just fair, and he was good and he loved what he did. But he wasn’t just close to me, he was close to my dad and my family and this is just very hard to digest because my friend just passed away.”

Charter Oak football coach Lou Farrar, who has been coaching for nearly 50 years.

“Steve was a beginning reporter when I first met him, Farrar wrote. “And I learned from the first time he interviewed me that I could trust him.  I watched him grow into the prep editor and beyond, and he did a great job as a leader too.  But more than a talent, Steve continued to be a friend and I’m going to miss that friendship a great deal.” 

 

Bonita football coach Steve Bogan, who met Hunt during his glory days at South Hills.

“Steve was straight up and honest,” Bogan remembered. “He worked hard at getting high school sports in the arena when there wasn’t social media to do it. He worked. 

“He worked as hard as anyone and that was obvious, but he was also fair and made sure he that whatever he wrote, he got it right. He was a win-win type of guy. He wrote during a time when newspapers were at their peak and he did it as well as anyone.”

 




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