Dr. Michael Hilton Tunnell

October 2, 1954December 19, 2014
Obituary of {subject.fullNameWithPrefixAndSuffix}

Michael Tunnell, 60, died peacefully on Friday, December 19, 2014, at the Norton Pavilion in Louisville, KY. From the first moment of his cancer diagnosis in 2011 until the final decision to enter hospice care, Mike approached his fight with this disease with his characteristic smile, gentle nature, and grace. Mike enjoyed being with us right to the very end, and his last days were filled with visits and messages from beloved family, colleagues, and former and current students. Mike taught and loved so many students over his 40-year career, and one of his last joys was in giving grandson Simon his first toy trumpet.

Mike was born in Tucson, AZ and grew up in Powell, TN, near Knoxville. He was a graduate of UT, where he majored in music/trumpet performance. He pursued graduate degrees at the University of Louisville (MM) and University of Southern Mississippi (DMA), and enjoyed a long career of performing and teaching at numerous colleges and universities. Mike joined the faculty of the University of Louisville School of Music in 1988, and was one of the biggest Cards fans on the planet. He was a member of Crescent Hill Baptist Church.

Mike is survived by his wife, Meme Tunnell; daughter, Dr. Morgan Snyder (Eric); son, Robert Tunnell; and grandson, Simon Calvin Snyder, all of Louisville; parents, Hilton and Winona Tunnell, of Powell, TN; sister, Virginia Williams (Steve), of Knoxville, TN; brother, David Tunnell (Cathy), of Palm Bay, FL; mother-in-law, Camille Fuller; brother-in-law, Robert Fuller (Marla), all of Franklin, KY; and 13 nieces and nephews.

Funeral services will be on Tuesday, December 23, 2014 at 11 AM in the Sanctuary of Crescent Hill Baptist Church, 2800 Frankfort Ave. Visitation will be on Monday, December 22, 2014 from 3-8 PM at Arch L. Heady-Cralle Funeral Home, 2428 Frankfort Ave.

A Memorial Concert is scheduled for 2:00 PM on Sunday, January 25, 2015 at the University of Louisville School of Music, Comstock Hall, 2301 S. 3rd St.

Memorial gifts may be made to the University of Louisville School of Music Michael Tunnell Scholarship Fund or to the Michael Tunnell Memorial Scholarship Fund at: or International Trumpet Guild Legacy Fund, PO Box 2688, Davenport, Iowa 52809-2688(please specify Michael Tunnell Fund).

For those folks coming to the service, and play a horn, please bring your horn, and you're invited at the end of the service to partake in a final tribute for Michel in the church balcony.

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Past Services

Monday, December 22, 2014


Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Celebration of Life Service