May 13th, 2015 was a sad day for the Shoals area of Alabama, and for the entire southeastern United States. On that day an energetic voice, known to many, passed away. There are few radio personalities left that are true to themselves and use their skills to bring others up to their level. “Rex Holiday” was so much more than a faceless voice on the radio, he was Robert Hunter. So while most air staff are corporate personalities Rex was always Robert.
I first heard Rex over ten years ago when I lived in Atlanta, Georgia. He hosted a morning show that helped me stay alert on my drive to work. His jokes were funny, but his willingness to share deep thoughts with the public kept me intrigued.
I met Robert when I started working as a radio personality at Big River Broadcasting. When I chose the name “Beth Hunter” for my “on-air” persona, he immediately took me under his wing and claimed me as a little sister. He told me the truth – even when it was not pretty. His raw honesty helped me mentally prepare for radio work. Back then I was a struggling student and he always knew when I wasn’t eating, and made sure I ate. I still have no idea how he knew.
On Saturday June 20th, 2015, the Jameson’s Singing River Bar and Grill hosted a Remembering Rex event. The theme “Music is the Voice of the Soul” was appropriate because his love for music was intertwined with every layer of life. Robert had many accomplishments over his life long career, including multiple Jaycees Speak-Up awards for facing his fear of public speaking. Many of his other accomplishments are listed in his obituary.
It was amazing to learn more about a man who briefly entered my life twice. Robert was the kind of man who helped everyone. His wife, Alicia Hunter, said he brought a lot of people home to couch surf. It didn’t matter if you needed to crash for the night because you were unfit to drive or you needed a few days to get back on your feet – he was always there for those he could help.
Robert was a connoisseur of cooking with a collection of cookbooks numbering in the thousands. He loved to try new recipes and share them with others. It wasn’t out of the ordinary for him walk in to the radio station with food for everyone. Sharing the culinary arts was one of the many joys he created in his life.
Robert loved having long in-depth conversations. When people around him began putting words to his unvoiced questions, he naturally began to start unraveling the mysteries. This quest led him to research religious theologies and ponder many of life’s enigmas.
It was an honor to have met Robert and he is truly missed by so many. His song has completed the coda, and now his tone will linger on in our hearts. Music really was the voice of his soul.
Life is eternal and love is immortal, and death is only a horizon,
and a horizon is nothing save the limit of our sight!
About Amy Amy Burgess is a writer who has found her home in the Shoals Area. Her chronic illness challenged her to find function in the dysfunction. Learning ways to manage has unlocked a love of research. Amy’s blog chronicles her journey to wellness. She has learned the healing benefits of taking care of herself and she challenges you to take care of yourself, because you ~>ARE<~ worth it!