William Lord ‘Hap’ Hilbish Jr., 78
William Lord “Hap” Hilbish Jr., 78, longtime resident of Coeur d’Alene, passed suddenly and peacefully at his home on the morning of Nov. 18, 2017. He had been battling kidney disease and lung cancer for the past several years.
He was born in Alameda, Calif., on Nov. 6, 1939, to William Lord “Skipper” Sr. and Jeanne Elizabeth Hilbish. He was the older brother to Denine Hilbish Keltner, who still resides in Alameda, Calif. He married Donna Joy Avelar in California and had two children, William Lord “Bill” Hilbish III, and Elizabeth Anne “Buffi” Hilbish and moved the family to Coeur d’Alene in August of 1971.
Hap was an active member of the Coeur d’Alene community. After moving to Coeur d’Alene, Hap joined the Junior Chamber of Commerce (Jaycees). As an active Jaycee, Hap successfully chaired the fundraising to purchase some of the last privately owned property on our wonderful treasure Tubbs Hill. Many years of Jaycee projects, working the Diamond Cup and putting on the fireworks show on the Fourth of July resulted in the Jaycees awarding Hap an International Senatorship, a lifetime award. As a JCI Senator, Hap continued to work, raising funds for scholarships and supporting local Jaycee activities. In 1992 Hap became the United States JCI Senate President. During his year as National President, Hap traveled all over the United States and the world representing USJCI making many friends worldwide. After his term as president, Hap continued to work on national JCI issues. As an Idaho JCI Senator, Hap remained active and at the time of his death he was the Treasurer of the Idaho JCI Senate.
Hap was an active member of the Shriners Calam Temple. He was a Master Mason of Kootenai Lodge No. 24, Past President of Kootenai Lodge No. 24AF and M, and Past Commander of Legion of Honor (the go-carts had to be driven by an honorably discharged Veteran. Hap had been in the Navy). At the time of his death, he was the Director of the Loyal Order of Jesters.
Hap was also a successful Realtor and he worked for several local offices including Century 21 and Keller Williams, also having started a real estate company of his own with his longtime friend Deanna Goodlander. He was the consummate professional, holding multiple designations and was very active within the local, state, and national real estate community. He was named Coeur d’Alene’s Realtor of the Year in 1981, 1986 and 2004; and was Idaho Realtor of the Year in 1981 and again in 2004 — the only Idaho Realtor to receive that award twice. He had held executive positions in many local and state real estate associations including: past president of the Coeur d’Alene Association of Realtors, past president of the Idaho CRS Chapter; past president of Coeur d’Alene Multiple Listing Service; board of directors and executive committee of the Idaho Association of Realtors and regional vice president for the Council of Residential Specialists of the National Association of Realtors.
Hap leaves behind his children, son Bill Hilbish of Coeur d’Alene, and daughter Elizabeth Hilbish Mallinen of Coeur d’Alene. His grandchildren, WL Tanner Hilbish of Burlington, Vt., Dayton Hilbish, Max Mallinen who is attending college in Hamden, Conn., and Finn Mallinen who is attending ski academy in Sun Valley, Idaho. His other close family members include his sister, Dee Hilbish Keltner in Alameda, Calif., his nephews, Greg Prado and his family in Hayden, Idaho and Stephen Prado of Keizer, Ore. Hap also leaves behind many friends and colleagues whom he considered family as well.
He was preceded in death by his father and mother.
We will be holding a celebration of his wonderful life on Dec. 15, 2017, at the Shriners Event Facility, 1250 W. Lancaster Road, Hayden, ID 83835. It will begin at 4:30 p.m. and end around 7:30 p.m. We will be serving light snacks and there will be a no-host bar available. This is not a religious service and we ask that you bring along a story to share with the group to help us remember the man that we have lost.
We ask that donations be made in his memory to the Shriners Children’s Hospital, 911 W. Fifth Ave., Spokane, WA.