Bill Haaker of Haaker Equipment Company Leaves Behind a Legacy of Charity, Family and Friendship

“Bill was my friend and golfing buddy and fishing buddy for forty-five years. He was my business partner for twenty. We’re all going to miss him and try and make him proud as we move ahead,” Randy Blackman, President of Haaker Equipment Company, said of Bill Haaker, who passed away suddenly in late December.

“I could write pages and pages,” Blackman said of his friend, “He had a lot of friends and a strong family.” A fact which was proven by the seven hundred people who were in attendance at Haaker’s funeral service, held January 3rd in Whittier, California.

Haaker was the son of the company’s founder, John, and had worked with the company since 1972. In a statement posted on Haaker Equipment’s website, Blackman wrote, “Bill’s passion for his customers, his employees, and life in general was unmatched…The sudden and tragic loss of Bill is a shock to all of us at Haaker Equipment Company. His energy and determination are almost irreplaceable. At the same time, over the thirty years of our time in business, Bill was instrumental in shaping an organization that is bigger than any individual and one that will outlive all of us that are current owners.”He is survived by his wife Cindy, son Jake and daughter Robin. His daughter and her husband Matt blessed Haaker with two grandchildren, to which Blackwell also wrote, “Like all roles in his life, Bill vigorously embraced that of Grandpa.”

In lieu of flowers, donations are being accepted to benefit Casa Colina Outdoor Adventures, an organization with which Blackwell and Haaker were both heavily involved. Casa Colina is a rehabilitation facility for people with stroke and traumatic brain and spinal cord injuries. The Outdoor Adventures Program is a continuum of the rehabilitation care center and an extension of the healing process for patients. After they undergo and complete their therapy, they can participate in outings they may not be able to do themselves, have always wanted to do or used to do before they were injured.

Both men served as directors for the Casa Colina Hospital and for the last six years, Haaker was chairman for the committee in charge of organizing Casa Colina’s biggest fundraising event, their annual golf outing, which Blackman said has raised over a million dollars.

If you would like to make a donation, please send to Casa Colina Outdoor Adventures, 255 E. Bonita Ave., Pomona, CA 91769. More information can be found at http://www.casacolina.org/centers/outdoor.shtml.

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