On Oilman H.L. Hunt and his Son Hassie
Bill Porterfield wrote:
"The family had not yet entered the sanctuary, but at our backs we were startled to see an unmistable likeness of the dead man standing in the doorway. It could have been Hunt himself, thirty years younger. "Hassie!" someone whispered. And indeed it was. Haroldson Lafayette Hunt III, the old man's eldest son, the gentle one who was said to live in a world of his own. Some great tragedy had befallen him, and he had lived close to the side of his father. Once, it was said, he had shown the same managerial genius as the father, only to retreat from the world of men and affairs.
Some said Hassie's tragedy was his experience in the Second World War. Others said he had never gone to war, that he had changed because he could not stand up to the pressure of being a great man's son. Is it indelicate and inaccurate of me to slip here into heresay? What the mourners said that day, and what the press and other people wrote and said, were the stuff of the Hunt legend. For a man so prominent yet so private, this legend is what lives on, and it bathes his children in the same light. In a moment Brother Chriswell himself would be myth-making, and I would listed to that. Right now I watched Hassie Hunt. He walked down the aisle, looked at his dead father, and wept. Then he returned to his post behind us, near the door. There was in him such a sad dignity. "
----- Bill Porterfield (one of my literary idols) describes the funeral of legendary oilman H.L. Hunt, "A Loose Heard of Texans," 1978
Beauty is only skin deep but Texas is to the bone.