David Mooney dies at 74
Longtime civic leader first brought cable TV to area
Aug 01, 2013 | 1823 views | 0 0 comments | 6 6 recommendations | email to a friend | print
David Palmer Joseph Patrick Mooney, 74, died peacefully on Thursday, July 25, in Longview. For over 30 years he and his wife, Robbie, operated Gilmer Cable Television Co., the first cable television service in Gilmer and Upshur County.

Services were held at St. David’s Episcopal Church Monday. Mooney was a charter member of the congregation, serving as the treasurer for the first 20 years of its existence. He served numerous stints as a member of the vestry and on the vestry of Trinity Parish of Northeast Texas which coordinates the activities of the Episcopal congregations in Mount Pleasant and in Gilmer. The Rev. Pat Young officiated the requiem mass with the assistance of the Rev. Ethel Cannon, the deacon of Trinity Parish.

Internment followed on Tuesday in Hot Springs, Arkansas.

The Mooneys moved to Gilmer in 1979 and began constructing their cable system, completing the tower installation in late 1980, and bringing cable service to their first client, Mark Hudgins, in 1981. Service continued until August 31 last year when failing health and other factors led to the decision to terminate the company.

For his years of service to the cable television industry, Mooney was inducted as a Texas Cable Television Pioneer and a recipient of the John L. Mankin Award, the highest award given by the Texas Cable Association.

During their three decades in the community, the couple became involved at many levels, with his wife concentrating on the company and the Upshur County Library. She preceded him in death April, 2012 after the couple had celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary with friends and family the year before.

Mooney came to Upshur County with an extensive background in cable television. After starting his professional career in his grandfather’s newspaper, Mooney became a vice president of WEHCO Media where he was the general manager of several cable television systems including Hot Springs, Camden, Hope and Prescott, Arkansas, Vicksburg, Mississippi, and lastly Longview, Texas. It was from Longview that he decided to branch out on his own and start a cable system in Gilmer.

Shortly after opening his operation in Gilmer, he joined the Rotary Club in 1981 in which he was an active member until health problems interfered. He also worked with the county commissioners, acting as the emergency manager for a number of years, and became involved with the East Texas Council of Governments, serving on the board of the Texas Workforce Commission.

For many years, Gilmer Cable TV served as a local host during the Labor Day Muscular Dystrophy Telethons. He also participated in the East Texas Yamboree, the Rotary-sponsored Corporate Spelling Bee, Treats on the Square, and as a cancer survivor, to a victory lap in the Relay for Life. For several years, Gilmer Cable TV broadcast by tape delay the games of the Gilmer Buckeyes, and in the later years showed the county commissioners court sessions, and services at First Baptist and Cavalry Baptist Churches.
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