Gail Borden Hunter

March 29, 1941January 21, 2021

Gail Borden Hunter, 79, died on January 21, 2021, after a prolonged illness. A long-time resident of Powell, Gail was born in March of 1941 in Cookeville, Tennessee to Walter Halcolm Borden and Elsie Ermine Borden.

Gail began her distinguished career at the University of Tennessee shortly after her marriage in 1962. Until her retirement in 1993, she was the secretary for the Pride of the Southland Band under the direction of Dr. WJ Julian. At her retirement, Gail was the first person to be honored as a Lifetime Member of the Pride of the Southland Band. She continued working with Dr. Julian to establish the Smoky Mountain Music Festival, which became one of the premier music festivals in the nation.

Gail is survived by her husband of 59 years, Jeff Hunter, long-time basketball coach at Powell High School; her sister, Linda Borden Bridgewater (Roy); sisters-in-law, Barbara Hunter Luke (Henry), Joyce Borden, and Lisa Hunter; brother-in-law, David Hunter (Beverly); and numerous nieces, nephews, great-nieces, great-nephews, and a host of band kids. Gail was preceded in death by her parents, her brother, James “Jimmy” Borden, and her brother-in-law, Steve Hunter.

So that all may join us in remembering Gail, a Celebration of Life service will be held at a later date. In lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations be made to the Gail Hunter Memorial Band Scholarship at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville.

UT Pride of the Southland Band 1741 Volunteer Boulevard 227 Natalie L. Haslam Music Center Knoxville, TN 37996-2605


No public services are scheduled at this time. Receive a notification when services are updated.


Gail Borden Hunter

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Donald Dewey

February 7, 2021

Ms Gail
You were always there for us, softened the blows from DOC, and always had our back in the pride..what a circle of life for you...knowing we did all those circle drills for...YOU!!
Love always deweys class of 74!
Be at peace!!

Michael Combs

January 27, 2021

Jeff, Please accept my sincere condolences for Gail's recent passing. I worked closely with Gail and the UT band program for many years during my early days as a music professor at UT. Gail was definitely a very special person and I have such great memories of her.

Janet Wheeler

January 26, 2021

Almost 40 years ago, Aunt Gail took me shopping at the Mall in Cookeville. We were in a large department store and she said she would buy me any shirt I wanted. Being an almost teen, I chose the most ridiculous cut off sweatshirt that said, "Where's the Beef?" Of course, Aunt Gail let me get it and I wore it proudly many times, my mom was not as pleased as I was with the purchase. It become sort of a personal joke between Aunt Gail and I. Often times, when we called one another, we answered the call with "Where's the Beef?" Even though we didn't talk often, when we did, it was always with lots of laughs and love. I will truly miss you!

Kathy Ray Shoopman

January 26, 2021

I am sorry to hear of Gail’s passing. During my UT band years she was the safe haven for inquiries, support, direction, and occasional frustrated direction. Her smile and support for so many of us thru the years was remarkable.

My prayers for comfort for you.

Kathy Ray Shoopman

Timothy Miller

January 26, 2021

My condolences to Jeff and the family. Gail was the guide for many students who made their way through the UT Band during the Julian years. For those of us who were band workers she was more like a mom, and she kept a good many of us out of harms (Julian's) way. She was the one who really ran the band!! I have nothing but fond memories of my five years of reporting to Gail, well, mostly!!

Tim Miller (79-84)

Houston Bowlin

January 26, 2021

Coach Hunter,
So sorry for your loss. Prayers your way.....

Houston Bowlin

walter idol

January 26, 2021

Jeff, family and friends. Patty and I were saddened to hear of Gail's passing. Since we are both from the " Julian" era of the band, we both have vivid memories of all that Gail was to the band and its members. We were fortunate to have her as our resident advocate, defender and sometimes, "corrector". Her laugh was infectious, and her wrath was utterly terrifying! I feel blessed to also have called her my friend....
Prayers to you all during this difficult time
Patty and WalterIdol

David Bozeman

January 26, 2021

Sorry to hear about your wife coach. Our thoughts and prayers are with you.

Clay Young

January 25, 2021

Coach Hunter, so sorry to hear about your loss, prayers go out to you!!! Gail was very good to everyone, especially our PHS teams!!!! Everyone who knew Gail and you will be thinking of you! I will always be thankful for you in my life and heart because you were so helpful and supportive of me!! God bless and take care!!! Clay Young.

Mike Bayless

January 25, 2021

Coach Hunter, I am sorry to here of Gail's passing. I have found memories of her during my years at PHS. My thoughts and prayers are with you during this time of grief. I am always available should you need anything.
Numbers 6:24-26