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Ohio Region Sad News: White Fence Inn owner Bill Hiser Passed Away Yesterday

 
Old 10-07-2009, 11:00 AM
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BrandonH
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Default Ohio Region Sad News: White Fence Inn owner Bill Hiser Passed Away Yesterday

If you've driven or raced Mid-Ohio regularly, chances are good you stayed at the White Fence Inn once or twice.
The B&B was oriented toward the track, and founded by Ellen and Bill Hiser about 20 years ago. Bill grew up in a farmhouse about 2 miles up the road. He suffered a sudden and unexpected heart attack yesterday and died at home.

Bill was drafted in '68-69, and served as a medic. He was shot in a firefight not long after deployment, and spent the rest of his life in a wheelchair. He was a man of incredible character, accepting his fortune with something much finer than stocism: he attacked life with energy and creativity, and built a home for himself and blessings for his family that are the envy of anyone. He married and raised two wonderful kids, ran a fantastic B&B that extended hospitality for thousands, he competed in wheelchair marathons, served as a volunteer counselor for newly disabled vets, and was on the board of a national charity for disabled kids. Upon introduction, a newcomer was immediately met with two impressions: his broad smile and instant laugh, and the massive latent power of his handshake. In a way those two impressions condensed his entire character.

He had many friends in the racing community, including the Penske family and the Fittipaldis, who were regular guests. His guest register was a who's who of racing teams and drivers of the last two decades. I remember coming down late one morning after the houseguests had all departed for the track, to find he and Randy Pobst chatting away about life, love and racing.

I thought those of you in the local area would like to know. I don't have any information on funeral or condolence instructions yet but will post when I do.
Tearfully on the passing of a great guy and friend,
Brandon
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Old 10-07-2009, 11:19 AM
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Thanks for posting this. Sad to lose him - he was a great guy.
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Old 10-07-2009, 01:13 PM
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RIP, Bill.
and Thanks.
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Old 10-07-2009, 03:24 PM
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Brandon,

Thanks for posting.
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Old 10-07-2009, 03:29 PM
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R.I.P. Bill
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Old 10-07-2009, 03:47 PM
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R.I.P.
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Old 10-08-2009, 10:14 AM
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William E. "Bill" Hiser
November 08, 1950 ~ October 06, 2009
From: Lexington, Ohio
Visitation: Friday, October 09, 2009 from 2:00-4:00 P.M. and 6:00-8:00 P.M.
at Berean Baptist Church - Youth Center
Funeral: Saturday, October 10, 2009 at 11:00 A.M.
at Berean Baptist Church
Burial: Lexington Cemetery, Lexington, Ohio

Click [+] for Full Photo
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Old 11-14-2011, 12:04 PM
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Default White Fence Inn Sold

Reviving this old thread to add a sad coda: Every veterans day, I used to call Bill and thank him for his service. When I contacted his widow Ellen last week, I learned the White Fence Inn had been sold.

So much of our track/racing culture is driven by relationships and the WFI was a great little institution that made every trip to Mid Ohio extra special. I stayed there when I did my first track days at MO ~15 years ago with the (then) 'quattro' club. I had several family reunions there where we'd congregate for a trackday weekend and cousins would show up from various points of the compass. I remember a leisurely private breakfast with Randy Pobst who was also getting a late start one morning.
Anyhow: time moves on. I don't know if the new owners will maintain as a B&B. If you never stayed there, you missed a great time, and if you did, you know what I mean!
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Old 11-12-2012, 07:44 PM
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Default Remembering our Veterans

Three years have passed since we lost Bill. I think about him frequently, especially when we hear these ever-increasing news stories about the PTSD epidemic, and the huge ratio of casualties coming home with radical disabilities. The unbelievable advances in trauma care on the battlefield mean that many soldiers live to return home with massive disabilities.

Whenever I hear those stories, I think of Bill's life story as a ray of hope. He was truly a person with deep character, who took what life handed him and molded it into a productive and joyful life that influenced everyone around him. Read the original post for details. Every veteran's day I miss my friend Bill, but I'm grateful for the life he lived and the hope he spread.
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Old 11-13-2012, 08:52 AM
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Great guy! RIP
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Old 05-25-2015, 04:39 PM
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Default Memorial Day Bump

Just a memorial day bump for my Friend Bill, paralyzed by a bullet in Vietnam less than a month after his 18th birthday, then rebuilt a life that was as productive as it was heroic, passed in '09 after returning from a workout. I always toast Bill on Memorial Day, he was a great friend and host to racers and track-rats at Mid Ohio for a generation.
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Old 05-26-2015, 12:30 PM
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Brandon, thanks for the post.
Bill was a great guy and unfortunately an example of the true cost of war.
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