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Popular music minister and teacher dies shortly after Sunday church service

'He was music': Church members and students across North Texas are remembering Gerald Burnett Sr. and his passion for music.

DALLAS — The first Sunday service of the new year left an emotional impact on members of Mountain View Church of Christ in Dallas and everyone who knew its beloved minister of music.

Gerald Burnett Sr., 41, died shortly after standing in church doing what those who knew him say he loved.

Church members say Burnett-- husband, father and minister of music-- collapsed and died in the choir room sometime after service.

”It’s really surreal. Gerald meant a lot to all of us,” said church evangelist J.K. Hamilton.

Hamilton is the lead minister at Mountain View Church of Christ. He's also Burnett’s brother-in-law.

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”He didn’t just do music. He was music. He loved the music,” Hamilton said.

Burnett was well-known for helping develop music in other people. As a longtime educator, he spent 15 years as a music teacher and choral director in Duncanville Independent School District. He most recently served as DeSoto High School’s assistant choir director.

”Gerald was just a good, an all-around good, decent human being,” said former schoolmate Adrian Templeton. ”It’s easy for students, church members, people that he worked with to gravitate toward his personality. That’s just the type of person he was."

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Burnett is being remembered as a passionate man of faith. Condolences are being shared by people across the country.

”Music was him. They called him affectionately G-note,” former choir member and friend Carl Sherman Jr. added.

”Anytime you can connect with people, doing something they love to do, and you have a warm, inviting personality, you’re going to leave an impact here on earth. And he definitely did that,” Sherman said.

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Family members are focused on pushing through, right now. Hamilton said they are finding comfort in knowing Gerald Burnett Sr. spent his final moments doing what he loved in a place that he loved.